BETHLEHEM, Pa. – Senior Amanda Fazio pitched a great game, but the Bucknell softball team fell 1-0 to top-seeded Lehigh in the semifinal round of the Patriot League Tournament on Thursday at Leadership Park. The host Mountain Hawks advance to play Boston University in the winner's bracket final, while the Bison will play Army West Point in the consolation bracket at 11:30 a.m. on Friday.
Fazio gave up just one run on five hits and two walks in six innings of work. She pitched five scoreless innings before Lehigh’s Morgan Decker singled to center field, scoring Alexis Watanabe from second base for the only run of the game. The Mountain Hawks had just two hits prior to that inning.
The defense played well behind Fazio, who in a rare occurrence didn’t strike out a batter. The Bison turned a double play on a ground ball to first base to end the bottom of the first inning. Freshman Lauren Hadley then helped end a threat in the second inning, throwing out a Lehigh runner at the plate on a one-out groundball to second base.
Bucknell had numerous chances to get on the scoreboard. The Bison finished with six runners left on base, including four in the final three innings. With two outs in the top of the fifth inning, junior Chaylen Andolino singled, and freshman Ryanne Rokos reached on a two-base error to give the Bison runners on second and third, but they couldn’t get the go-ahead run home.
The Bison suffered some bad luck that may have prevented them from scoring in the top of the second inning. Hadley led off with a single and advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt by senior Mariah Midyette. Junior Jacee Almond then ripped a hard grounder that was headed to left-center field, but it was hit hard enough that Hadley was unable to get out of the way and was hit by the ball for the second out of the inning.
Christine Campbell recorded the complete-game shutout for Lehigh. She gave up six hits, walked two batters and didn’t record a strikeout. Fazio entered the game as the league leader in strikeouts, while Campbell ranked fifth.
Almond and Andolino had two hits apiece for Bucknell, while Hadley and Rokos each had one. Lehigh’s Jessica Calvini had the lone extra-base hit of the game with a leadoff double in the second inning.