PHOENIX – The UMKC softball team (12-36, 2-12 WAC) nearly pulled off a come from behind win against Grand Canyon (26-23, 7-6 WAC) in game two of a doubleheader following a five inning loss in Friday night play.
A powerful GCU lineup proved to be too much to handle for the Roos in game one as they muscled their way to a 12-0 five inning victory in game one. Lynsey Conner (Peggs, Okla.) and Andra O'Brien (Fond du Lac, Wis.) teamed up to throw the five innings, allowing eight earned runs on twelve hits.
Errors proved to be costly for UMKC, committing a pair in the contest that set up four unearned runs in a huge 10-run third inning for GCU. The Roos did come close to striking early on, getting two runners aboard in the top of the third while trailing 2-0. With two outs, Ashlin O'Brien (Fond du Lac, Wis.) hit a ball sharply but was lined right to the second baseman to end the threat.
Game two saw the Lopes jump on the board on the early with a two-run bottom of the first off of UMKC starter Olivia Fluehr (Loves Park, Ill.) for an early advantage. The early runs came off a home run from GCU slugger Nikki Gonzalez and was followed up with an RBI single from Loriann Olson in the second.
After the early runs, Fluehr locked in to throw four innings of two-run ball to keep the Roos within reach. The only blemishes coming from a pair of solo home runs in the fifth and sixth frames. Her final line resulted in five runs allowed on eight hits over six innings in the circle.
Trailing 3-0 lead into the fifth inning of play, UMKC struck for four runs to break through against GCU starter Breanna Aguilar-Beaucage. With the first two batters of the frame reaching base safely, the Roos recorded four consecutive base hits followed up with a sac fly to storm out front for a 4-3 edge. O’Brien, Maegan Rollow (Broken Arrow, Okla.), Kelsey Goodwin (Broken Arrow, Okla.) and Morgan Byrn (Lawrence, Kan.) each picked up RBI’s in the inning.
UMKC was unable to strike for any further offense as the solo home runs in the fifth and sixth sealed the close 5-4 loss. The Roos came close to evening up the score once again in their last at-bat, getting two runners on base, but were unable to cash in. O’Brien led the team offensively in the second game of the day, picking up a game-high three hits.
The Roos will take the field tomorrow for the series finale and last WAC contest of the year at 7 p.m. CT. The game will be broadcast on the WAC Digital Network free of charge and will have Live Stats available.
– UMKC –