Bucknell Softball Comes Up Short in Pair of Losses to Army
April 14, 2012
LEWISBURG, Pa. - Bucknell softball got a pair of firsts as Meredith Dickson (Fogelsville, Pa./Northwestern Lehigh) connected for her first career home run and Sophia Geraci (East Moriches, N.Y./Westhampton Beach) singled for her first hit and RBI of the season, but the milestones could not give the Bison their first Patriot League win of the year. Army took the first two wins of the four-game series 5-1 and 6-3 at Becker Field on Saturday afternoon.
Dickson's homer came in the bottom of the first inning in game one. The senior put the shot just over the left field wall and gave Bucknell (6-27, 0-10 PL) the early lead. That 1-0 advantage held until the fifth inning when Army (24-15, 7-3 PL) put four runs on the board. The Black Knights sent 10 batters to the plate and ultimately gathered four hits and three walks in the offensive push.
Army spent much of the fifth inning enjoying having the bases loaded. It was the one time Bucknell Alex MacLean (Northampton, Pa./Northampton Area) had difficulty getting out of trouble. The junior also loaded the bases earlier in the day in the third inning. She got Alexis AuBuchon to strike out looking and Marina Northup to ground out back to the circle to get away unharmed.
MacLean (3-17) finished the game credited with five earned runs on seven hits. She struck out two, but her seven walks allowed were what really hurt the Bison. Northup reached base for a second time in the game after drawing a walk in the top of the seventh. She eventually scored on a double drilled down the left field line, ending the game's scoring at 5-1.
Morgan Lashley earned the pitching win in both games. The freshman opened with a five-hit performance, striking out four. Bucknell had a bit more luck against her in the second game, tagging her for two runs on seven hits through the first 4.0 innings. Unfortunately, the Bison were still trying to play catch-up as the Black Knights had a 3-1 lead after the first 2.5 frames.
A strong offensive performance from Mary Horton (Plantation, Fla./St. Thomas Aquinas) kept Bucknell in the mix. The junior finished game two 3-for-4 with a run and an RBI. Horton's run in the third inning broke up the shutout bid as she came home on Mallory Lyons' (Coatesville, Pa./Coatesville Area) sacrifice fly.
Bucknell added a second run in the fourth inning, making the score 3-2. Horton was also partly responsible for that score as well. Her third single of the day plated Tori Robinson (Corona, Calif./Corona Centennial) with two outs.
With her 3-for-8 day, Horton took over the team lead in batting average. She is now at .312 on the season and is also tied for the team high in runs scored with 10 this spring.
The Bison continued to fight their way to the end. Although Army pulled away in the fifth inning with three more runs of their own, Bucknell made one final push in the bottom of the seventh. Colie Escobar (Cherry Hill, N.J./Cherry Hill East) was hit by a pitch, and she was followed by a Nikki Silva (Milford, Mass./Mount St. Charles Academy (R.I.)) single and an Army error that put Alex Wells (Hillsborough, N.J./Hillsborough) on first. With one out, the Bison had the bases loaded and a pinch hitting Geraci at the plate. Geraci grabbed her first hit of the season on a single through the right side. Despite the effort that allowed Bucknell to draw within 6-3, the Bison grounded into a double play to end the game.
Courtney Conover (Ocean Township, N.J./Ocean Township) and MacLean combined to allow six earned runs on 12 hits. Conover (1-3) took the loss after lasting 2.1 innings, allowing two walks and seven hits. MacLean finished in 4.2 innings with five hits, one strikeout and one walk.
Jules Steuer allowed one run on two hits in 3.0 innings of relief for Army. She also struck out two and walked one. Lashley still collected her 20th win on the season, however, improving to 20-11.
Bucknell and Army will square off at Becker Field again tomorrow for a doubleheader beginning at noon.