Posted: March 20, 2010
BALTIMORE, Md. – Down 7-0 after two innings, the Lehigh softball team rallied to score nine unanswered runs in the third and fourth innings as the Mountain Hawks went on to defeat Mount St. Mary’s 11-8 in Lehigh’s second game of the day at the UMBC Spring Classic Saturday at the UMBC Softball Complex. Lehigh’s pitching struggled for the second straight day, giving up a total of six home runs, but the offense came alive to help lead the Brown and White to a split after Lehigh fell to Niagara 7-3 in Saturday’s early game. With the split Lehigh is now 7-3 on the season.
In Saturday’s first game, Lehigh led Niagara 3-2 after four innings. The Purple Eagles took the lead on a Jaclyn Russell solo home run in the top of the second, but the Mountain Hawks tied the game in the bottom of the inning when freshman Kristen Mitchell tripled and then scored on a single by classmate Rosie Roessel. Sophomore Julie Fernandez doubled with one out in the third inning and classmate Jen Colquhoun put Lehigh in front with a two-run home run to left center. A solo home run by Maggie McDonald brought Niagara within a run.
In the sixth, the Purple Eagles battered Lehigh pitching for three home runs to take the lead for good. Laynie Stillman put Niagara ahead with a two-run blast, while Kristin Sito gave Niagara back-to-back home runs with a solo shot.
Junior Bri Gaumer gave up five runs on ten hits in 5.2 innings of work before giving way to senior Tiffany Curtis, who yielded a two-run home run to Teresa Healy. Gaumer took the loss in the circle as she falls to 2-2.
Lehigh mustered 11 hits in the opener, with Fernandez, junior Alex Cueva and senior Brooke Lewis recording two each.
Curtis took the ball for Lehigh against Mount St. Mary’s and the Mountaineers hit the sixth home run of the day off Mountain Hawks pitching just three batters into the game when Liz Christiansen hit a three-run shot to right center.
The Mountaineers’ lead grew to 7-0 after two innings on a fielder’s choice and a three-run bases-clearing double by Beth Everist.
The Mountain Hawks began to claw back in the top of the third inning. Lehigh loaded the bases with nobody out before Colquhoun singled to right field to score two runs. Three consecutive walks allowed the Mountain Hawks to plate two more runs, and Lehigh tacked on two more runs in the frame on an RBI infield single by junior Sam Miller and an RBI fielder’s choice by sophomore Audra Wood.
Lehigh took the lead in the next frame, as freshman Jacqi Kennelly doubled down the left field line to score the tying run and senior Lauren Eichblatt put the Brown and White ahead with a two-run single to left.
Christiansen answered for Mount St. Mary’s with an RBI single in the bottom of the fourth, but Lehigh tacked on two more runs in the top of the seventh on a double by Mitchell.
Curtis allowed seven runs on just four hits in three innings of work, but freshman Becca Bliss (1-2) came out of the bullpen with four innings of one-run relief to earn her first career win.
Lehigh out-hit Mount St. Mary’s 11-10, but no Mountain Hawk registered more than one hit in the nightcap.
Several lengthy games forced schedule changes for the final day of the UMBC Spring Classic. Instead of playing two games, Lehigh will play just one, a rematch with Delaware at 8:45 a.m. at the UMBC Softball Complex.