March 10, 2018

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Game 1:
Boxscore         PDF

Game 2: Boxscore         PDF

DELAND, Fla. – Much like on the opening day of the tournament field, the University of Tennessee at Martin softball team split Day Two of the Stetson Invitational on Saturday afternoon, knocking off Holy Cross (5-1) before falling to host Stetson (4-2).

The Skyhawks (10-13) bashed a pair of home runs on the afternoon while six different players notched RBIs. Senior Rachel Williams paced the Skyhawks with four base hits in the day while Alli Fulcher finished with three. The senior pair of Savannah Dodson and Jodie Duncan who also both tally a pair of base knocks to pace the squad which hit .320 as a team in the doubleheader.

In the pitching circle, freshman Caitlin Karo (5-3, 1.94 ERA) posted another strong performance against Holy Cross for the second time in the tournament. After shutting out Holy Cross yesterday, Karo nearly replicated her dominance, allowing just one earned run in her seventh complete game of the season. Hannah Ridolfi (5-7, 2.23 ERA) was hit with the loss against Stetson, allowing three earned runs in six innings of work.

Game 1: UT Martin 5, Holy Cross 1

UT Martin put the first run of the game on the board in the bottom of the first inning as Veronica Pezzoni led off the inning with an infield single before later moving into scoring position. The speedster wouldn’t be stranded at second long as Duncan pulled a double down the right field line which brought the game’s opening run home to score.

The Skyhawks added to their margin in the bottom of the second as Fulcher got the frame started with a single through the left side before being pulled for pinch runner Halie Fain. Fellow freshman Paige Clark would move her classmate over to second with a single of her own before the pair scampered to second and third on a sacrifice bunt by Aeron Smith. With runners in scoring position and one out, Williams lofted a sacrifice fly to center to score Fain before fellow senior Dodson singled through the left side to give the Skyhawks a 3-0 advantage.

With a decent margin on its side, UT Martin looked for more in the third inning. A walk by Aalia Bivens followed by a double from Duncan would put runners in scoring position with one out. The opportunity would not be wasted as Gracyn McBride tallied a single to bring Bivens home to score and make it a four-run contest.

Holy Cross notched its lone run of the contest in the fifth inning. A leadoff single by Taylor Moss started the inning before Gabby Muniz got the squad on the board with a double down the left field line and make it a 4-1 margin.

The Skyhawks would put the game out of reach in the bottom of the fifth inning. Looking to put the game out reach, Bivens would turn on the fifth-pitch of the at bat and launch a solo home run – her second of the season – to left center to give the Skyhawks its final margin of 5-1.

Game 2: Stetson 4, UT Martin 2

Neither team would find a way to score in the first four innings until the Skyhawks got on the board in the top of the fifth. A solo home run to left field by Fulcher opened the scoring push down the stretch to give UT Martin an early advantage.

Tournament host Stetson would storm back and breakthrough from its offensive struggles with a big fifth inning. Trailing for the first time in the contest, the Hatters scored three runs in the bottom of the fifth to take the lead. With a pair of runners on the bags, Smith singled to left field to score a pair of RBIs. Another run would come home to score on a throwing error, bring Smit home to score on the play.

The Hatters added another run in the bottom of the sixth inning on a solo home run by Lewis to center field, giving the home squad a 4-1 advantage.

Needing a rally of their own, the Skyhawks looked to bounce back in their final frame. Williams would continue the inning with a two-out triple down the right field line. Standing just 60 feet from home plate, Williams then continued her sprint around the bases, scoring on a wild pitch to cut the deficit to two runs. Despite the late run, the rally would come up short as the Skyhawks fell short 4-2.

UT Martin will close out the team’s appearance in the Stetson Invitational on Sunday, March 11 against Manhattan. First pitch is scheduled for 9 a.m.

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