Blue Hens Take Opener over Towson, 5-4, Before Tigers Respond With 4-3 Victory in Nightcap
March 25, 2012
• Game 1 Boxscore
• Game 2 Boxscore
TOWSON, Md. -- The University of Delaware softball team posted a 5-4 victory over Towson in the opener while the Tigers responded with a 4-3 victory in 12 innings during the nightcap as the teams split a Colonial Athletic Association doubleheader Sunday afternoon at the Tiger Softball Complex.
In the opener, Delaware (5-25-1, 1-2 CAA) struck first during the top of the second when Kaitlyn Breneman roped a two-out double to right and Marisa Newman followed by belting a two-run homer, her first as a Blue Hen.
The Tigers (15-14, 2-1 CAA) answered during the bottom of the third, as after Haley Stueckler led off with a double and Kelli Lyons walked, Hailey Balk doubled home both runners to knot the game at 2-2. The following frame Macie McGeehan and Stueckler each worked a base on balls with one out, prompting Brianna Jennings to replace Hannah Rust in the circle for Delaware. But the first batter Jennings faced was Lyons, who delivered a two-run triple to put Towson in front. However Jennings regrouped to strike out Balk looking and get Andrea Stevenson to fly out to right, keeping the Blue Hens within a pair.
Delaware then immediately responded, pushing across three runs in the fifth to take the lead for good. Jennings led off with a double, her first career hit, while Rachel Jones followed with a single to put runners on the corners with nobody out. After Maggie Creciun pinch ran for Jones, Jess Grisler ripped a single to left to drive home Jennings and make it a 4-3 game. Dominique Ortega then took over in the circle for Towson, and retired Alicea Coy on a sacrifice bunt that moved the runners to second and third.
Lara Andrews then dropped down a squeeze bunt, getting thrown out at first but allowing Creciun to score the tying run. Michelle McKinnon followed by doubling home Grisler to give the Blue Hens the lead back.
Brianna Jones led off the bottom of the fifth with a double to right for the Tigers, but Chenxi Jiao took over in the circle for Delaware and retired the next three batters to escape the jam. Jiao hit a batter and walked another in the sixth before getting Stevenson to fly out to right to maintain the lead, and then retired the Tigers in order in the seventh to close out the victory.
Jennings earned her first career win and improved to 1-8 after tossing 1.2 scoreless frames, while Jiao fired three hitless innings of relief to pick up her second save of the campaign. The Blue Hens pounded out 10 hits during the victory, tied for the second most this season. Missy McCormick took the loss for Towson and fell to 3-5 after she gave up five earned runs on seven hits in four innings of work.
The Blue Hens again took the lead during the nightcap by scoring three runs during the top of the third inning. Grisler led off by getting hit by a pitch, and after Coy singled to left, Andrews laid down a sacrifice bunt to move the runners to second and third. Towson pitcher Katie Lingmai then struck out McKinnon, but Gina Knutson (at right) blasted a three-run homer, her team-leading third of the year, to put Delaware on the board.
Towson answered back in the bottom of the third, loading the bases with two outs on a single by Stevenson and walks to Erika Stasch and McGeehan. Jill Donnelly then delivered a two-run single to bring the Tigers within 3-2.
The Blue Hens carried their one-run lead until the bottom of the seventh, when Stasch led off with a solo homer to knot the contest at 3-3. The game remained tied until the bottom of the 12th, when Brianna Jones led off with a home run to win it for Tigers.
Lingmai went the distance for Towson, moving to 9-4 after allowing three runs on eight hits while striking out 12 batters. Jiao took the loss for Delaware after surrendering two runs on just two hits, both homers, in the final 5.2 frames.
The Blue Hens return to action on Tuesday with a 2:30 p.m. doubleheader at Villanova.Back To Softball Home Softball Story Archive