LAWRENCE, Kan. – The UMKC softball team (5-14) took home a split on the final day of the Jayhawk Invitational, picking up their second win of the season over Northern Iowa (15-9) in extra innings before falling to Green Bay (2-12). The scheduled finale against Nebraska set for tomorrow afternoon has been cancelled to due to inclement weather forecasted in the area.
In the season rematch with Northern Iowa, UMKC got off to a quick start as Olivia Fluehr (Loves Park, Ill.) drove in Kelsey Goodwin (Broken Arrow, Okla.) on an RBI fielder’s choice to open up the scoring in the top of the first. The offense struggled to find further run support after the initial score, as UNI tacked on runs against starter Sara Miller (Marietta, Ga.) in the second and fourth innings to take a 2-1 lead into the fifth.
Miller put together a strong performance in the circle, tossing seven innings while allowing three runs (two earned) in the contest. With the Roos facing a one-run deficit to open the fifth inning, Maegan Rollow (Broken Arrow, Okla.) squared the game with a two-out RBI single up the middle to score Kamrie Harrison (Moore, Okla.).
After a pair of scoreless innings thrown by Miller, UMKC jumped back on top once more in the top of seventh with Fluehrs second RBI of the game on a two-out single to give the team a 3-2 lead headed into the bottom half of the frame. Down to their final out, UNI came up with a huge home run to knot the game up at 3-3 to send it to extras.
Fluehr took over in the circle for the eighth in ninth innings, keeping the Panthers off the board and allowing just one hit in her relief appearance. In the top of the ninth, Fluehr added to her impressive performance with the biggest swing of the game, sending the first pitch she saw over the fence for a two-run home run, her fifth of the season, to seal the 5-3 win for the Roos.
In the second game of the day, it was Green Bay who would jump out in front to an early advantage. Starter Lynsey Conner (Peggs, Okla.) allowed a run in the first but settled down to throw a scoreless second inning as UMKC worked to get their offense started.
The third inning brought major trouble for Conner in what resulted in a pivotal four-run frame for Green Bay. After retiring the first batter of the inning, the next six would reach base safely, bringing across three runs and ending Conner’s day with 2.1 innings pitched and four runs allowed. Fluehr came on in relief and escaped the bases loaded jam with a strikeout and groundout to end the inning.
Trailing 5-0 entering the bottom of the fifth, UMKC struck back on a Macy Hornosky (New Orleans, La.) RBI single that brought in a second run with a throwing error on the play. After another score from Green Bay to stretch the lead to 6-2, the Roos tacked on their final run of the game in the bottom of the sixth but was unable to close the gap further.
UMKC will play in Lawrence, Kan., for a second consecutive weekend in the Rock Chalk Challenge from Mar. 15-18. Scheduled games include matchups with Western Illinois, Saint Louis University, Murray State, Northern Colorado and Kansas.
– UMKC –