Early Deficit Too Much for Memphis in American Quarterfinals Loss
May 8, 2014
HOUSTON -The University of Memphis softball team battled back from an early 5-0 deficit but fell short in its comeback attempt losing 5-3 to USF in the American Athletic Conference quarterfinals on Thursday afternoon at the Cougar Softball Stadium.
The loss to the No. 2 seeded Bulls ends the season for the Tigers. Memphis finishes the year with a 23-33 overall record and 5-15 in conference play.
USF scored five runs in the first three innings to take an early 5-0 lead. After being one-hit by the Bulls in all three games at USF, Memphis had just one hit through the first four innings. But Memphis put together four hits in the final three innings to score three runs.
Senior Kelly Braman led off the fifth inning with her second hit in the game. Senior Ellen Roberts then hit the first pitch off the scoreboard in right field to cut the USF lead to three runs. The Tigers recorded three hits in the frame, but stranded a runner at first.
The Tigers put the tying run at the plate in the sixth inning with two outs when Roberts again came up with runners on second and third. But Bulls reliever Erica Nunn got Roberts to groundout to third to end the inning.
The Bulls took an early 2-0 lead on two hits and two errors in the first inning. Juli Weber led off the inning with a single and after reaching third on a one-out error, scored on a RBI single by Stephanie Medina. Kourtney Salvarola also scored on an errant throw home when Memphis had her caught in a rundown between home and third after a pitchout.
USF scored a run in the second on a pair of hits and a stolen base. Kristen Wyckoff came around to score from second on a single by Weber. The Bulls capped its scoring in the third with a two-run homer to left by Lee Ann Spivey.
Roberts (12-20) suffered the loss for Memphis in the circle after allowing five runs on six hits in three innings. Junior Jordan Richwood pitched a scoreless three innings in relief for the Tigers and gave up three hits with two strikeouts.
American Athletic Conference Pitcher of the Year Sara Nevins (27-7) earned the victory for USF. Nevins allowed two runs on five hits with seven strikeouts in five and a third innings. Nunn picked up her fourth save of the season, allowing one run on no hits in an inning and two-third.