March 1, 2005
ORLANDO, Fla. - After winning the Golden Panther Adidas Invitational last weekend in Miami, the UCF softball started this week with 3-2 and 5-2 wins over St. Bonaventure at the UCF Softball Complex on Tuesday afternoon.
"We needed to keep the momentum going that we got over the weekend knowing we have a big number of games this week" head coach Renee Luers-Gillispie said. "This wasn't an overall A-plus performance, but it's not counted differently in the record books that any other of the wins we've had this season."
The Bonnies opened the scoring in game one during the second inning. Kristin Brunetto opened the frame with a triple that carried over the head of Jania Shinhoster in center field. Her twin sister, Joelle Brunetto brought her home reaching an error.
UCF evened the game in the bottom of the inning with a two-out rally. Kacie Feaster reached on a throwing error, and was awarded second base when the ball sailed into the UCF dugout. Ashley Van Ryn drew a walk to keep the inning going, and Feaster came across on a single by Cici Alvarez.
SBU retook a 2-1 advantage in the third inning when Kim Dodson drew a walk, and moved to second on a single by Joelle Brunetto. This time it was Kristin Brunetto picking up the RBI single for the Bonnies.
The Golden Knights charged back, and took the lead for good in the fifth inning. Jania Shinhoster slapped a single to left field. Stephanie Best came to the plate, and smashed a two-run homer giving UCF a 3-2 lead.
Ashley Baker threw her second straight complete game in as many starts striking out a career-high nine batters. Baker improved to 3-2 on the season.
"I was impressed with Baker's performance out there today," Luers-Gillispie said. "She hadn't started a game in two weeks, but she came up big. She's been working really hard in practice of getting ahead of hitters, and she did that today."
UCF charged out of the gates to start game two. The Golden Knights got on the board in the second inning using another two-out rally.
Nicole Balogh walked, and got to second on an infield hit by Alvarez. The bases were loaded when Shinhoster was hit-by-a-pitch. UCF scored the run taking advantage of a wild pitch by Megan McCartney.
The Golden Knights added three more runs with two outs in the third inning. Jennifer Tomasetti drew a base on balls, and advanced to second on a wild pitch. Cat Snapp got on base aided by a SBU fielding error, and stole second base. With runners on third and second, Feaster doubled off the left field fence driving in both runs, and giving UCF a 3-0 lead. Feaster would score on a RBI single by Alvarez.
"Don't' get me wrong, I'm happy that we are getting it done with two outs, and that the girls are producing when the pressure is on," Luers-Gillispie said. "But as a coach you wish we could get it started a little earlier in the inning."
Snapp picked up a RBI single in the fourth inning scoring Best making it 5-0.
The Bonnies would cut the deficit down to 5-2 on a two-run homer by Kristin Brunetto, but Lindsay Enders would come in shutting the door with authority picking up her second save of the season. Enders retired the last five batters she faced, striking out the final four hitters.
UCF returns to the diamond tomorrow afternoon with a doubleheader against No. 8/9 Michigan. First pitch is scheduled for 1:00 p.m. Admission to the UCF Softball Complex is free for all games.
Game One Notes:
Ashley Van Ryn made her first career start at designated player... AVR went one-for-two with a single and a walk... Stephanie Best ripped her 53rd career home run, eighth this season, in the fifth inning... It was Best's 27th hit of the season giving her the Atlantic Sun lead... UCF picked up their first win this season when trailing after four innings... Ashley Baker broke a career-high with nine strikeouts, and pitched her second straight complete game... UCF improved to 8-4 in games decided by less than two runs... Baker stranded the tying run on third base in the seventh inning... The Golden Knights have won 46 of their last 47 decisions over the last two seasons when taking a lead into the seventh inning.
Game Two Notes:
Every UCF player that started the game reached base at least once... This was the first doubleheader sweep of the season for the Golden Knights... UCF scored first for the 17th time in 25 games this season... The Golden Knights are 14-3 this season when scoring first... UCF scored all five runs with two outs... The Golden Knights have driven in 74 runs with two outs... The UCF pitching staff has struck out the final batter in nine of the 17 victories this season... Enders has done it six times this season.... UCF is now 47-1 over the last two seasons when leading after six innings.