Hoosiers' Late Rally Comes Up Just Short Against Jacksonville State
Feb. 14, 2010
KENNESAW, Ga. - Senior Kelli Ritchison drove in a career-high four runs and Samantha Berenter and Samantha Heyman both scored a pair of runs for the Hoosiers (0-2). But a late rally in the seventh inning came up short and the Hoosiers fell to Jacksonville State by the score of 7-6. The game was played at Bailey Park on the campus of Kennesaw State University as part of the K-Club Classic.
Just as they did in the first game of the day, the Hoosiers jumped out to an early lead, when Ritchison laced a two-run single to right center field with the bases loaded. Amanda Wagner and Berenter drew back-to-back walks to open the inning. Two batters later, IU had runners at second and third for Ritchison who came through with the key hit over the infield.
In the fourth inning, the Gamecocks evened the score at 2-2 with the help of a two-run home run off IU starting pitcher, freshman Cassie Loweth. They were able to get to Loweth again in the top of the fifth inning for a three-run home run and just like that, JSU was on top, 5-2.
Jacksonville State went back to work in the sixth inning and scored two more runs to bump their lead to 7-2, and the Hoosiers had just six out left to get back in the game.
But the young Hoosiers did not go down quietly, as they rallied for two runs in the bottom of the sixth and the JSU lead was trimmed to 7-4. Berenter lined a one-out double to right center and Heyman followed with a walk. Kelsey Stander dropped down a infield single and the Hoosiers had the bases loaded for Ritchison. The Boonville, Ind., native delivered yet again, this time dropping a two-run single into left field for her third and fourth RBI of the game.
After freshman Jessica Dobson came in and pitched a perfect seventh in her Indiana debut, the IU bats went back to work in the bottom of the inning. Sara Olson nailed a double deep into the gap in right center and Brittany Stein followed with a sharp single to left to put runners at the corners. Amanda Wagner then singled off the glove of the diving third baseman for JSU and the Gamecocks' lead was 7-5 with only one out. A wild pitch put runners at second and third for Berenter before she lifted a sacrifice fly into center field to cut the deficeit to just one. But on the sacrifice fly, Wagner attempted to tag and go to third on the throw to the plate and was tagged out for the final out of the game.
Loweth (0-1) took the loss in the circle for Indiana, going four innings and giving up five runs on six hits and walking one in her first game in an IU uniform. Monica Wright came on and pitched two innings in her first game action since March 13, 2009, due to injury.
Indiana will be back in action on Friday, Feb. 19, at the Louisville Slugger Desert Classic in Las Vegas, Nev. The Hoosiers will play Boise State, Illinois-Chicago, Oregon, Utah and UNLV during the three-day tournament.
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