ARLINGTON, Texas – The UMKC softball team (4-7) used a strong third inning to overpower the Nicholls Colonels (11-3), 8-4, in the Roos’ first game of the UTA Invitational on Friday. In UMKC’s second game against Wichita State (5-2), the Shockers showed their strength and handed the Roos a 12-0 setback in five innings.
Nicholls got on the board first after scoring twice in the bottom of the second inning. The first run came off of a bases-loaded walk followed closely behind by a single.
In the top of the third inning, UMKC’s Faith Willis (Kearney, Mo.) homered to right center field, bringing teammates Sydney Garcia (Kansas City, Mo.) and Abby Warkentine (Auburn, Kan.) home with her. Maegan Rollow (Broken Arrow, Okla.) hit a sac-fly for the final out of the inning, allowing Ashlin O’Brien (Fond du Lac, Wis.) to score and put the Roos ahead by two.
UMKC continued its momentum in the fourth and fifth innings, extending the Roos’ lead by three more runs. Sophomore Morgan Byrn (Lawrence, Kan.) bombed her first home run of the season into right center field to begin the fourth inning. In UMKC’s next at-bat, freshman Abbi Johnson (Midwest City, Okla.) followed in her teammate’s footsteps, crushing her first collegiate home run into left center field.
The Colonels threatened in the fifth inning, adding two more on the board and pulling within two runs to make it a 6-4 ball game. In the seventh inning, Byrn hit her second home run of the day to give the Roos the 8-4 lead. Andra O’Brien (Fond du Lac, Wis.) held the Colonels to no hits in the bottom half of the inning, giving UMKC the win.
“We finally came out and performed the way that we know we can,” commented head coach Meredith Smith Neal. “We hit the ball hard and played defense behind our pitchers. Our pitchers did well working together to get the win.”
The Roos stuggled in their second outing of the day against Wichita State. The Shockers held UMKC to just three hits while taking 13 of their own to run-rule the Roos.
UMKC will have a second chance at Wichita State on Saturday at 10 a.m. CT before taking on tournament host UT Arlington at 12:30 p.m. CT.
– UMKC –