Bucknell Softball Saves Saint Francis (Pa.) Split with 6-3 Win
April 8, 2009
LEWISBURG, Pa. - The Bucknell softball team got off to a slow start against Saint Francis (Pa.) on Wednesday at the Bucknell Softball Field, getting just one run in the seventh inning for a 7-1 loss. The Bison (13-21) struck early in the second game of the doubleheader, however, propelling themselves to a 6-3 victory.
Ashley Beans (Hanover, Pa./Hanover) accounted for Bucknell's tally on the scoreboard with a home run to center field to lead off the seventh. The shot was her fourth of the season and the seventh of her career, moving her into a tie for seventh place on the program top-10 list. The senior's play in the second game also placed her in a first-place tie with former Bison Erin Curatola for most career games played at 182.
The Bison found themselves trailing in a hurry in the opening game. Stephanie Griffin scored on an error in the third inning to give Saint Francis (17-20) its first run of the day.
The Red Flash increased their advantage in the following inning, putting five runs on the board. The hardest hit came from Kelly Slingwine, who hit a grand slam off Katie McDonald (York, Pa./West York Area). That marked the end of the day for McDonald (7-6), who allowed five earned runs on eight hits in 3.1 innings of work.
Liz Fanning (Ventura, Calif./St. Bonaventure HS) finished the game for Bucknell, giving up one run on three hits over the final 3.2 innings.
Laura Caldwell pitched well for the Red Flash, carrying a no-hitter into the sixth inning. Lauren Fry (South Plainfield, N.J./South Plainfield) broke that up with a single up the middle, and Ashley Carlson (Fairless Hills, Pa./Pennsbury) followed up with a bunt single. Caldwell finished the day with her seventh win of the season, allowing one urns on four hits in seven innings.
Saint Francis took the early 1-0 lead again in the second game, but Bucknell refused to let the contest get out of hand. Beans led off with a single up the middle. She later scored on an RBI single from Jane Messersmith (Newport Beach, Calif./Newport Harbor).
Messersmith logged her second RBI single of the game in the fourth inning as the Bison gave the Red Flash some of their own medicine. Bucknell added five runs to the score in the set. Brittany Schlorff (Horsham, Pa./Hatboro Horsham) singled, and Sam Rollandi (San Carlos, Calif./Notre Dame Belmont) was hit by a pitch to open the Bison's offensive threat. Carlson followed with a walk and one out to bring Jessie Snyder (Tacoma, Wash./Stadium) to the plate with the bases loaded. Snyder did not disappoint, clearing the bases with a triple to right center.
Messersmith's hit completed the scoring burst, bringing home Snyder and setting the tally at 6-1.
The Red Flash threatened briefly with a comeback in the sixth inning as Jamie Dixon led off with a double. She scored on a single from Griffin, who in turn scored on a Janelle McCoy double. Messersmith got out of trouble, however, getting Slingwine to strike out looking.
Messersmith (5-8) finished the game with a career-high seven strikeouts in seven innings. The freshman gave up just three runs on eight hits in her team-leading 10th complete game of the season.
The freshman duo of Messersmith and Schlorff led the Bison in hitting with two hits apiece, with Messersmith hitting 2-for-4 with two RBI and Schlorff going 2-for-3 with a run. Beans finished 1-for-3 with two runs and a walk in the game.
Bucknell returns to league play, taking on Colgate in Hamilton, N.Y., at 1 p.m. on Saturday, April 11 and noon on Sunday, April 12. The road trip will be a short one as the Bison return to the Bucknell Softball Field on Tuesday, April 14 to face off against UMBC at 2 p.m.