Mistakes Costly as Memphis Falls to UAB in C-USA Tournament
May 7, 2009
For Immediate Release
Memphis (22-30) 001 022 0 - 5 8 7 UAB (21-33) 402 302 x - 11 10 3 W: Harris (4-4) L: Valle (8-14) HR: UAB- Allen 2, Skates
EL PASO, Texas - After having ended the season for UAB the past two seasons, it was the Blazers that ended the year for the University of Memphis softball team in an 11-5 loss at the Conference USA Championship Present by Helen of Troy on Thursday morning.
The ninth seeded Tigers finishes the year at 22-30, while No. 8 seed UAB (21-33) moves on to face No. 1 Tulsa later in the day.
Mental mistakes and errors put Memphis in a hole early in the game and by the time the Tigers mounted a comeback, it was too late. The U of M made a program worst seven errors in the game and left 10 runners on base.
The Tigers scored five runs on eight hits with four of the runs coming in the fifth and sixth innings. Memphis had the tying run at the plate in the sixth inning with one out, but UAB got out of the jam and then scored a couple of runs in the seventh to put the game away. The Blazers had six of their 11 runs come off home runs and another four score on errors.
UAB was on the verge of run-ruling Memphis with a eight-run lead in the fifth inning and two outs. But Leigh Rowan hit a two-run single over the first baseman to extend the game.
Leila Dolfo led off the game with her 10th double of the season to right center and advanced to third with one out on a sacrifice bunt from Lelani Bernardino. But Gross missed a bunt on a suicide squeeze attempt allowing the Blazers to pick off Dolfo at third and end the scoring threat.
The mistakes continued for Memphis in the bottom of the inning as the team made three throwing errors and gave up a two-run homer to fall behind 4-0. After already scoring two runs on an error and the three errors, Amanda Allen hit a two-run shot to center with no outs.
The hit knocked Memphis starting pitcher Janelle Valle (8-14) out of the game after having given up two earned runs. Vanessa Walle entered the game in relief and retired three of the next four batters to get out of the inning.
Hines scored the Tigers' first run of the game from third on a RBI fielder's choice to third by Gross. Memphis stranded the bases loaded to end the inning.
Allen hit her second two-run homer of the game in the bottom of the third to increase the Blazers' lead to five. UAB had four hits in the inning and left runners on second and third with one out.
UAB scored three more runs in the bottom of the fourth on three more Memphis errors and a pair of hits. The runs put the Blazers up 9-1 and gave them an eight run lead heading into the fifth inning and putting the Tigers in danger of being run-ruled.
With two outs in the top of the fifth, Rowan hit a two-run single over the first baseman to extend the game. Gross and Kamri Chester scored from second and third on the play.
Memphis added two more runs in the sixth inning with Alyssa Palmieri scoring on an error and Hines coming across the plate on a single by Bernardino. The Tigers brought the tying run to the plate with the bases loaded and one out, but left all three on base for the second time in the game.
UAB's Cameron Skates hit a two-run shot in the bottom of the sixth inning to put the Blazers up, 11-5.
Valle suffered the loss for Memphis in the circle, while UAB's Kayla Harris (4-4) earned the victory. Walle pitched the final six innings for Memphis and allowed five earned runs on nine hits with three strikeouts.