No. 2 seed Point Park eliminated from KIAC Softball Tournament on Day 1
May 3, 2014 at 8:00 a.m. ET
Point Park has a team meeting in the game versus Berea. Photo by Zachary Weiss.
By Zachary Weiss, Point Park Athletic Communications Student Assistant
BEREA, Ky. – The No. 2 seed Point Park University softball team saw its season come to an end after losses to Berea (Ky.) and Brescia (Ky.) on Friday at the KIAC Softball Tournament at Berea College.
Point Park (26-17, 19-8 KIAC) first lost to tournament host, No. 7 seed Berea (Ky.), 7-3, to open the tournament. The Pioneers then lost to No. 3 Brescia (Ky.), 13-4, in the loser’s bracket later in the day to bow out of the eight-team, double-elimination tournament at 0-2.
Point Park had plenty of chances in both games with 12 hits versus Berea and another 10 versus Brescia. The Pioneers were tied with Berea, 2-2, through four innings and led Brescia, 4-3, through five innings. But the opponents put together big, offensive outbursts in the later innings to win both times.
Point Park’s Megan Dyer was the starting pitcher versus Berea, and she threw 4.1 innings striking out seven batters. Of her five runs allowed, three were earned.
Berea first scored two runs in the first inning compiling three consecutive hits to open the game. Kari Kviten’s double and a Katelyn Blair sacrifice fly resulted in the two runs.
Point Park had a scoring opportunity in the first inning, but the Pioneers left two runners in scoring position as Ashley Morran struck out.
In the third inning, the Pioneers put a run on the board. Becca Babincak singled and then advanced from first base to third on an Alyssa McMurtrie ground out. LeAnne Blaeser knocked in Babincak with an RBI single to cut the lead to 2-1. Once again however, runners were left in scoring position.
The Pioneers tied the game at 2-2 in the fourth inning after Teresa Davis legged out a single and advance to second on a wild pitch. Babincak, who was 2 for 3 with a run and an RBI, singled her home.
With the scored tied 2-2 through four innings, Berea broke the game open with four runs in the top of the fifth.
Five consecutive batters reached base, and Sarah Urchek came on in relief to get the final two outs of the inning. Up 6-2, the Mountaineers added an insurance run on a Sarah Haycraft home run in the top of the seventh inning.
Down to its last at bat, Point Park attempted to rally in the bottom of the seventh, and Karen Mao knocked in a run, however, a fly out ended the game. This put Point Park in the loser’s bracket where it would face No. 3 seed Brescia, which lost to No. 6 Carlow to open the tournament.
Mao was 3 for 4 with an RBI, and Gabi Vogt was 3 for 4 to lead the Point Park offense versus Berea. Blair was the starting pitcher for Berea, and she went all seven innings. She did give up 12 hits but held the Pioneers to three runs with four strikeouts and no walks.
Hannah Harley started the elimination game for Point Park and allowed three runs in five innings. She scattered six hits, struck out two, walked one and left the game with a 4-3 lead through five innings.
Berea scored in the top of the first when Cori Wildeman’s single brought home Kayla Wade.
Point Park would tie the game in the third inning when Mao brought in Blaeser on a single. Five consecutive Pioneers reached base in the inning.
Brescia was held without a hit until the fifth inning when it scored two runs with RBIs from Lacey Gill and Stacey Harbold.
Point Park would take its first lead of the day in the bottom half of the fifth when it scored two runs. Ashley Morran and Davis each had RBI in the inning. Harbold, who was Brescia’s pitcher, had a high pitch count throughout the game finishing with 127, as the Pioneers got to her as the game wore on.
The Pioneers would be done in by a six run sixth inning, however. Brescia had eight hits in the inning and 19 for the game, which was nine more than what Point Park had. It wasn’t until the ninth batter of the inning that Point Park got an out. The Pioneers went to the bullpen with Urchek to start the inning, and she was relieved by Kate Reese.
Before Point Park got out of the sixth, Brescia was up, 9-4. A similar fate was met in the seventh inning when Brescia added four runs on five hits.
Point Park threatened to score in the sixth inning, but after two singles, it was unable to bring across any runs. Harbold retired the Pioneers in order in the seventh inning eliminating them from the tournament.
Point Park's 10-hit attack versus Brescia had Blaeser and Vogt each go 2 for 4, and Morran was 2 for 3 with a double and an RBI. Harbold pitched all seven innings for Brescia to get the win. She pitched both games on the day for the Bearcats and versus Point Park gave up four runs on 10 hits, struck out four and walked only one.
This marks the final game for five seniors in LeAnne Blaeser, Teresa Davis, Brea Magnone, Destiny Martin and Ashley Morran, which compiled a total of 105 wins while at Point Park. Returning for Point Park next year will be 6 of 9 positional starters and all of its pitchers.
Three Pioneers won All-KIAC awards as Hannah Harley, Karen Mao and Ashley Morran all received awards Friday.
The KIAC Softball Tournament continues through Saturday, May 3 with the winner receiving the KIAC’s automatic bid to the NAIA national tournament.
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