LAWRENCE, Kan. – The UMKC softball team (6-15) erased an early deficit against Saint Louis (12-9) but was unable to claim their second consecutive victory, narrowly falling 6-4 Friday night.
Saint Louis jumped out to an early lead in the home half of the first, putting their first two batters on base before Sadie Wise sent the first pitch she saw from starter Andra O'Brien (Fond du Lac, Wis.) over the center field fence for a three-run home run.
O’Brien, making her sixth start of the season, would settle down to retire five of the next six batters but ran into trouble once more in attempting to close out the second. After retiring the first two Saint Louis hitters she allowed the next three to reach base safely, including a double with two aboard to put the Billikens out front 4-0, ending her outing.
Sara Miller (Marietta, Ga.) came on in relief and got the Roos out of the inning without further damage and put together a strong performance the rest of the way. She finished the appearance allowing one run on four hits over 3.1 innings of work.
The UMKC offense heated up in the third inning, striking for three runs to shift the momentum. Olivia Fluehr (Loves Park, Ill.) continued her stellar play of late with a two-out RBI single to center to put the team on the board. The RBI was the third in her last two games and her team-leading 23rd of the season.
The scoring continued following the Fluehr base knock as Kelsey Goodwin (Broken Arrow, Okla.) extended the inning with a double to give the Roos a pair of runners in scoring position with two away. Goodwin had an excellent day at the plate, finishing 2 for 3 with a pair of doubles.
After coming up with a clutch game-winning home run in the extra innings victory last night, Lia Lombardini (Chesterton, Ind.) once again came through under pressure with a single to right that scratched across both runners. The pair of RBI’s gave Lombardini five total between the last two contests.
UMKC would keep up the pressure on in the fourth inning, working their way into another great scoring chance with runners at second and third with just one out. Maegan Rollow (Broken Arrow, Okla.) capitalized with an RBI fielder’s choice to square the game up at 4-4.
Saint Louis climbed back on top in the late innings, tacking on single runs in the fifth and sixth to reclaim a 6-4 lead late in the contest. UMKC was unable to find an answer to make a comeback for a second consecutive night, stranding a runner in the sixth and seventh inning to close out the game.
The Roos are back in action tomorrow when they will play two more games in the Rock Chalk Challenge. The team will square off with Murray State at 11:30 a.m. CT before taking on Northern Colorado at 7 p.m. CT.
– UMKC –