Fordham Opens Citrus Classic with Losses to Virginia Tech and UCLA
March 2, 2012
Orlando, Fla. - The Rams early season struggles continued on Friday, March 2, as they lost a pair of games in day one of the 2012 Citrus Classic from the Wide World of Sports Complex in Orlando, Florida. In game one, Fordham lost to Virginia Tech 5-1, and the Rams fell in game two to UCLA, 9-5.
The Fordham softball teamed opened play in the 2012 Citrus Classic with a 5-1 loss to Virginia Tech on Friday afternoon from the Wide World of Sports Complex in Orlando, Florida. The Rams committed four errors that led to four unearned runs for the Hokies.
In a non-descript first inning for Fordham, Nicole Callahan singled to centerfield which gave her base hits in 8 of 10 games so far this year.
The Hokies got to Fordham starting pitcher Michelle Daubman in the bottom of the first. Lauren Gaskill laced a one-out single to left field before Courtney Liddle worked a walk and Virginia Tech had two runners on base, but Daubman was able to escape unscathed. Kelsey Mericka flied out to left and Betty Rose grounded out to third to end the threat.
The Rams got a runner in scoring position in the third. Daubman helped herself with a base hit to centerfield. Two batters later, Jessica Crowley advanced her to second on a sacrifice bunt. But Jamie LaBovick grounded out to end the threat.
Virginia Tech rallied again in the bottom of the third as Dani Anderson led off with a double to left field. Gaskill then walked and the Hokies had runners on first and second with no outs. Liddle fouled out to Gabby Luety behind home plate, and the Rams dodged trouble when Mericka hit into a double play to keep the game scoreless.
Fordham capitalized on the fortuitous defense in the very next inning as Pagie Ortiz ripped her team-leading second home run of the season to give the Rams a 1-0 lead.
However, the Hokies took the lead in the bottom of the fourth as Rose led off the frame with a single up the middle. The next batter, Kristen Froelich, tried to lay down a sacrifice bunt, but Daubman threw the ball away and Rose moved to third while Froelich was safe at second. Logan Spaw then tied the game at one with a sacrifice fly to center that plated Rose and advanced Froelich. Froelich came in to score when Gabby Luety's errant throw got away from Elise Fortier on a pickoff attempt and the Hokies led 2-1.
Kylie McGoldrick extended the inning with a single to left but was forced at second when Bkaye Smith ripped a grounder to third. The next batter, Anderson, reached on a fielding error by Brianna Turgeon with Smith moving to third. Gaskill then singled to third, scoring Smith, but Fortier threw the ball away and Anderson scored while Gaskill chugged around to third for a 4-1 Hokie lead.
The final run of the inning came when Gaskill scored on a passed ball.
Fordham had chances to score later in the game but stranded two runners on base in both the fifth and seventh.
Daubman took the loss despite giving up just one earned run over four innings. Taylor Pirone pitched the final two in relief. Daubman had two hits in the game and Ortiz had a hit, RBI and run scored.
Jamie LaBovick helped Fordham's auspices in game two as she led off the game with a single to left. She later advanced to second on a wild pitch, but was stranded there.
UCLA jumped on Fordham starter Jen Mineau early as Katie Schroeder ripped a leadoff single up the middle. Andrea Harrison then made it 2-0 with a home run to center field.
UCLA put the game away in the fourth as Ally Carda led off with a solo home run to right center. Two batters later, Harrison made it 4-0 as she doubled home Schroeder, who had walked. Stephany LaRosa followed Harrison and gave UCLA a 6-0 advantage with a two-run homer down the left field line.
UCLA manufactured a run in the bottom of the fourth as Jessica Hall reached first on a fielder's choice. Sam Duran pinch ran for her and got around to third on a base hit down the left-field line by Carda. Schroeder then connected on an RBI single to left and the Bruins led 7-0.
Fordham finally broke through in the sixth. Callahan led off with a double to right center, which gave her base hits in nine of 11 contests in 2012. Erica Wills ran for her and Wills came in to score when Ortiz connected on a double to right-center. Cora Ianiro saw her first action of the year as a pinch runner for Ortiz and she advanced to third on a fly out from Fortier and scored the Rams' second run when Kayla Lombardo hit a ground ball that the second baseman couldn't field cleanly to cut the Fordham deficit to five, 7-2.
UCLA got the two runs back in the bottom of the sixth but Fordham rallied in the seventh. Jessica Crowley led off with a walk and advanced to second on a wild pitch. After two outs, Callahan worked a walk and the Rams had two runners on base for Ortiz. Ortiz collected her second hit and second RBI of the game with a single through the left side that scored Crowley to make the score 9-3. Fortier followed with a double to left that drove in both Callahan and Ortiz and Fordham was within four, 9-5. But the Rams got no closer as the Bruins held on for the win.
Ortiz had two hits and three RBI over the course of the day and Callahan had hits in both games.
Fordham is now 3-8 on the season. The Rams continue play in the Citrus Classic on Saturday with games against RV/24 North Carolina and Longwood. The game with the Tar Heels begins at 12:15 PM.