Errors Costly in Softball's 5-2 Loss to Central Michigan
March 9, 2010
CLEARWATER, Fla. - The Penn State softball team struggled at the plate and in the field on Tuesday night, falling to Central Michigan, 5-2, at the Eddie C. Moore Complex Field No. 2. The Lions generated just five hits and two errors led to four CMU runs. Freshman Lauren Rossi (Yardley, Pa.) belted her first collegiate homer in the loss.
With the score tied at one apiece and the Chippewas batting in the bottom of the fifth inning, Brittini Merchant reached on a single to left. Summer Knoop laid a sacrifice bunt down the third baseline but the throw from Desi Giordano (West Caldwell, N.J.) was low and couldn't be handled at first by Lauren Yao (Los Angeles, Calif.). Amanda Klosterman sacrificed the two runners over to second and third for the first out of the frame, setting up a pivotal stretch for Central Michigan (3-6).
Pinch hitter Brogan Darwin hit an RBI sacrifice fly to left that would turn out to be the game winner. After a hit batter, a double by Katie Greenman drove home two more to give Central Michigan a 4-1 lead. CMU would tack on another in the sixth for a 5-1 advantage.
In the top of the seventh, Rossi came into the game as a pinch hitter in the eighth slot with one out. Rossi rocked a 1-0 pitch over the left field wall for Penn State's 14th home run of the year and the first of Rossi's young collegiate career. Rossi became the seventh Nittany Lion to hit her first collegiate home run this season. Unfortunately for Penn State, pinch hitter Kimi Wong (Goleta, Calif.) and Cassidy Bell (Bakersfield, Calif.) grounded out to end the threat. Bell led all Lions on Tuesday with two hits, both screaming shot singles up the middle.
Penn State (12-7) opened scoring in the top of the first inning, getting off to a great start when Ashley Griffith (Mt. Laurel, N.J.) singled to left, stole second base and Jackie Hill (San Jose, Calif.) singled to right field scoring Griffith for an early 1-0 lead. Hill pitched five full innings giving up four hits and one earned run while striking out six and walking just one. She dropped her ERA to 1.66 in the contest, while Lisa Akamine (Escondido, Calif.) came in relief of the senior starter. Akamine went one inning without a hit or run scored and struck out one in the three batters she faced.
The Nittany Lions return to action on Wednesday when they take on Saint Joseph's at 2:00 p.m. The game will be played at the Eddie C. Moore Complex in Clearwater and live stats can be found on Gametracker as well as live commentary on Twitter (@PSULionSoftball).