Pack Softball Falls in 8 Innings to No. 12 South Florida
Feb. 15, 2013
South Florida 4-Team Tournament
TAMPA – A single by South Florida shortstop Kourtney Salvarola in the bottom of the eighth inning scored the game’s only run, as the No. 12 Bulls took a tight 1-0 victory over NC State Friday evening at the USF Softball Stadium.
It was the second loss to a ranked team on the day for the Wolfpack (4-3), which fell to No. 4 Tennessee 7-0 earlier in the day.
Under tournament rules, both teams started the eighth inning with a runner on second base. In the top of the eighth, the Pack had runners on first and second, but was unable to bring a run home.
The Bulls (4-1) moved their runner on second base, pinch runner Ilaura Reeves, to third on a sacrifice bunt, then brought her home with the game-winner on Salvarola’s single to right field.
It was the fifth hit of the game against Wolfpack sophomore starting pitcher Emily Weiman, who had two walks and two strikeouts in the game.
“It’s tough to generate runs when you face two of the best pitching staffs in the country on the same day,” said first-year coach Shawn Rychcik. “We had a couple of opportunities, but couldn’t get anything across the plate.”
The Wolfpack played well defensively, twice ending South Florida threats with big defensive plays.
In the bottom of the first, the Bulls got a runner to third base with one out as Stephanie Medina tripled to left field. Trying to get the early lead, the Bulls tried a squeeze play with Kenshyra Jackson putting down a bunt in front of homeplate.
The Wolfpack loaded the bases in the top of the third, when junior outfielder Scout Albertson doubled off the left-field wall, sophomore shortstop Renada Davis was intentionally walked and senior outfielder Bethaney Wells singled to the shortstop-third base hole.
The inning ended on freshman Hanna Sommer’s strikeout.
In the bottom of the sixth, the Bulls got a runner on base with a hit by pitch and a sharp single to left field by Medina. But Wells threw Devine out from left field at third base to end the inning.
“I thought Emily, after struggling a little bit in the first game, settled down and pitched really well in the second game,” Rychcik said. “She was getting stronger as the game went along.
“If we hadn’t been playing with the tiebreaker rule, the game could have gone on for a long time.”
On the day, Albertson had a double and a single at the plate. Wells and Leah Jones had the Pack’s other two hits.
Rychcik and his squad return to action on Saturday, when it faces Coastal Carolina at 11 a.m., followed by the tournament semifinals Saturday afternoon and evening.