BALTIMORE, Md. – The UMKC softball team (8-22) played the first two games of their four scheduled contests for the week on Tuesday, falling to Morgan State (10-13) in extra innings before claiming a 7-6 win in game two of the doubleheader
Lynsey Conner (Peggs, Okla.) was given the starting nod in the circle for game one, allowing four runs on seven hits over four innings of work. MSU got on the board first with an RBI double in the bottom of the second inning in what was a low-scoring affair early on. UMKC struck for a three-run frame in the top of the fourth after tallying just one hit the first time through the order.
After opening the top of the fourth with a flyout, back to back MSU errors brought in the Roos’ first run of the game. A walk and strikeout following the miscues brought Morgan Byrn (Lawrence, Kan.) to the plate with two on two out. Byrn would cash in with a big double to bring home both runners for a 3-1 UMKC lead.
The team would scratch across two more runs in the top of the fifth. Kelsey Goodwin (Broken Arrow, Okla.) would make her away around the base path after leading off the inning with a single before extending their lead to 5-1 on an RBI single from Alyx Bloom (Clay Center, Kan.).
Back to back three-run innings for Morgan State in the fifth and sixth, with an RBI single from Lia Lombardini (Chesterton, Ind.) sandwiched in between, put the Bears back on top 7-6 heading into the final frame. Down to their final out, Faith Willis (Kearney, Mo.) reached base on an error and was driven home on a Sydney Garcia (Kansas City, Mo.) double to even the contest.
After a scoreless bottom of the seventh tossed by Olivia Fluehr (Loves Park, Ill.) the Roos reclaimed the lead on an RBI single from Maegan Rollow (Broken Arrow, Okla.) headed into the home half of the eighth. With one runner aboard and one out, MSU delivered back to back RBI hits to seal the 9-8 extra innings victory.
Game two saw UMKC strike quickly in the top of the first on a two-run home run off the bat of Ashlin O'Brien (Fond du Lac, Wis.), her first of the season, for an early advantage. MSU would answer with four runs in the home half of the frame off of starting pitcher Sara Miller (Marietta, Ga.) in her seventh start of the year.
The bats went silent for a brief stretch, picking up just two hits over three innings as MSU scratched across single runs in the second and fourth. The Roos were able to load the bases in the top of the fourth but a strikeout ended the frame without a score. Olivia Fluehr took over in the circle in the second inning and put together a fantastic performance, tossing six innings and allowing just two runs on six hits while picking up three strikeouts.
Trailing 6-2 in the top of the fifth, UMKC broke through with a big inning to close the gap. With the bases loaded and one out, Fluehr smashed a double to right center to drive in a pair of runs, bringing her RBI total up to a team-best 26 on the season. Maegan Rollow would continue the inning with an RBI sac fly to trim the deficit to a single run headed into the final stretch.
After a pair of scoreless frames worked by Fluehr, the Roos entered the seventh inning trailing in a close 6-5 ballgame. The team quickly evened up the score with a Kamrie Harrison (Moore, Okla.) triple and an RBI single from Sydney Garcia to start the frame. Garcia would advance to third on a passed ball and a fielder’s choice, representing the winning run with just one out. Morgan Byrn would deliver the game-winning RBI fielder’s choice as Garcia beat out the MSU attempt to cut her down at the plate.
A leadoff single in the bottom of the seventh gave MSU life as they stared down a 7-6 deficit but Alyx Bloom immediately erased the baserunner on a stolen base attempt to shut down the comeback.
UMKC will play two more games tomorrow to wrap up the east coast swing, squaring off with Mount Saint Mary’s (8-13) at 11:45 a.m. before taking on UMBC (5-18) at 2 p.m. CT.
– UMKC –