May 6, 2018

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Game 1:
Boxscore        PDF

Game 2: Boxscore        PDF

MARTIN, Tenn. – The University of Tennessee at Martin softball team could not overcome a pair of strong pitching performances on Sunday afternoon, dropping both ends of an Ohio Valley Conference doubleheader to Belmont by the final scores of 3-1 and 2-0.

The Skyhawks conclude the regular season with a 25-30 overall mark while finishing 9-13 in OVC action. With the regular season in the books, UT Martin will now shift its focus to the OVC Softball Championship in Oxford, Ala. beginning on Wednesday, May 9 as the No. 7 seed. The double-elimination bracket will feature eight teams and be played at Choccolocco Park.

UT Martin’s offense struggled on the day, tallying just seven hits in the doubleheader while scoring one run. Senior Aeron Smith paced the squad with a pair of hits on the day while five other players jumped into the hit column. The team’s lone run scored of the day came on a solo blast by senior Alicia Hansen down the left field line in Game 1.

Both starters were hit with losses in their respective games as Hannah Ridolfi (9-17, 2.58 ERA) got the nod in Game 1 while Caitlin Karo (16-10, 2.74 ERA) saw action in Game 2. Ridolfi would take a shutout into the seventh until three earned runs came home to score in the inning. Meanwhile, Karo allowed nine hits while allowing two earned runs in her 20th complete game of the season.

Game 1: Belmont 3, UT Martin 1

Neither time would find much rhythm on offense as the game remained tied heading into the top of the seventh inning. After a leadoff single later saw the Bruins have a runner at third with two outs, Baylee Cook singled through the right side to break the scoreless game. With the go-ahead run on the board, the Bruins added to their margin on the following at-bat as Jess Andree bashed a two-run shot off the left field scoreboard.

Needing a rally of their own in the bottom half of the inning, the Skyhawks turned to a senior. With Hansen leading off the inning, she turned on a pitch and send a solo home run screaming right down the left field line for her first homer of the season. While the big blast got the Skyhawks on the board, the next three batters would go down in order to seal the 3-1 defeat.

Game 2: Belmont 2, UT Martin 0

Belmont was the first squad on the board once again in the second game of the day, scoring in the top of the third inning. A leadoff bunt single by Taylor Hargrove got the inning started before later coming home to score on a single through the left side by Andree to take a 1-0 advantage.

The Bruins added to their margin in the top of the seventh to secure an insurance run. A double down the left field line by Cook spelled trouble before Andree tallied her third RBI of the day with a double off the right field wall.

Facing a two-run deficit, the Skyhawks needed a rally in the bottom of the seventh. The Skyhawks would place a pair of runners on base and ultimately move the pair into scoring position but a strikeout would end the threat and the contest.

UT Martin will return to action against Austin Peay in the opening round of the OVC Softball Championship on Wednesday, May 9. First pitch from Choccolocco Park is scheduled for 12:30 p.m.

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