Two-Run Fifth, Solid Pitching Propels Softball to Split With SEMO
March 23, 2006
SEMO 200 000 0 - 2 7 2 Memphis 010 000 0 - 1 7 0SOUTHAVEN, Miss. - A two-run fifth inning and a strong pitching effort from Jenna Kubesch propelled the Memphis softball team to a 3-2 win in the second half of a double-header against Southeast Missouri State Thursday at Greenbrook Park. The Lady Tigers dropped game one of the twinbill 2-1 before rebounding to take game two.
Memphis and Southeast Missouri were tied at one entering the bottom of the fifth in game two, but the U of M came up with two runs to take a 3-1 lead en route to the victory.
Kubesch worked the full seven innings, allowing six hits and just one earned run, while tying a Lady Tiger season-high with 10 strikeouts to help the U of M earn a split in the double-header.
Johnson took a tough loss in game one, striking out nine and giving up seven hits and two earned runs to a strong Redhawk team that extended its win streak to nine games in the first game of the day.
Both halves of the double-header were extremely tight throughout. Memphis struck first in game two with a run in the bottom of the first, when Cara Stiles scored on a wild pitch.
Southeast Missouri came back to plate a run in the top of the fourth, using a single and a Lady Tiger error to knot the game at one.
Memphis reclaimed the lead with the two-run bottom of the fifth, using two hits and a pair of walks to take a 3-1 advantage. Kara Ross dealt the big blow with a single down the rightfield line to score Stiles. Leila Dolfo added the second run, scoring on a wild pitch to give the U of M a two-run lead.
SEMO cut the deficit to in half with a Lauren Bradley solo homerun to lead off the sixth. Stephanie Huffman attempted to add another run, but Stiles preserved the lead as she reached over left-centerfield fence to rob the Southeast pitcher of a game-tying homerun.
Kubesch then recorded the final five outs in much quieter fashion to pick up the win and move her record to 7-3 on the season.
Stiles led the U of M offense in game two, going 2-for-3 with two runs scored.
Game one was just as close as the second contest of the day, with the squads putting all three runs on the board in the first two innings before the pitchers took over.
SEMO scored both of its runs in the top of the first, with second-baseman Michelle Summers leading off the game with a solo homerun and Huffman doubling to score Charlene Ramirez.
The Lady Tigers scored their lone run in the bottom of the second when Lindsey Pridgen reached on a fielder's choice, and came home on an infield single by Stiles.
Memphis had a number of additional threats, but could never push a second run across, amassing 10 runners left on base.
Johnson shut the Redhawks down after the first inning, but took the hard-luck loss to fall to 7-5 on the season.
The U of M offense tallied seven hits on the game, with Bridgette McNulty going 2-for-4 to lead the way.
"I was really proud of the way our team played today," said Thees. "We made some mistakes, but made some great plays too. We played two tough games against a very solid team."
With the split, Memphis moves to 17-11 on the season. The squad will next be in action Saturday and Sunday, March 25-26 when it travels to Tulsa, Okla., to take on the University of Tulsa in its third Conference USA series of the year.