Defiance 4, Bluffton 1
MSJ ends Bluffton's season on first day of HCAC tournament
May 2, 2008
TERRE HAUTE, Ind. - Mt. St. Joseph scored three runs in the first inning and never looked back as the Lions ended Bluffton's season with a 6-3 win over the Beavers on Friday, May 2. Bluffton wrapped up its 2008 season with a 25-17 record, while Mt. St. Joseph improved to 16-22 overall. MSJ will play the loser of Rose-Hulman vs. Defiance on Saturday, May 3.
Defiance 4, Bluffton 1
The Bluffton University softball team dropped its 2008 Heartland Conference tournament opener to Defiance by a final score of 4-1 on Friday, May 2, 2008. The Beavers fell to 25-16 on the season while Defiance improved to 20-16. Bluffton moves into the loser's bracket and will face Mt. St. Joseph at 6 p.m. today, while Defiance squares off against number one seed Rose-Hulman, a 1-0 eight-inning winner over the Lions, in the 8 p.m. contest.
Bluffton took the early 1-0 lead over the Yellow Jackets when junior Lindsey Miller (Wapakoneta/Wapakoneta) parked a Justine Johnston offering over the wall in left center with two outs in the first inning.
Defiance scored in only one inning, but a Bluffton error led to three unearned runs as the Yellow Jackets scored four times in the fourth frame. Marah Robinson opened the inning with double to center field. Following a wild pitch, she scored when Mallory Faling singled to left. The Beavers opened the door when an errant throw on Kayla Crager's attempted sacrifice bunt put runners at first and second with no outs. Aarika Davis moved both Jackets into scoring position with her bunt and Stephanie Lieto picked up Bowman with a sacrifice fly to left. Cara Hughes delivered the knockout blow with a two-run homer to center for a 4-1 lead.
Johnston did the rest, holding the Beavers scoreless over the final six innings of the game and finishing with a five-hitter. She improved to 14-6 on the year after fanning four and walking only one batter.
Abby Snider (Wapakoneta/Wapakoneta) went 2-of-3 at the plate, including a double, while Miller's first-inning dinger was the only run Bluffton scored in the loss.
Brooke Babcock (Findlay/Findlay) fell to 13-12 on the season after giving up four runs, only one earned, on three hits in 3.2 innings of work before Kellie Kenney (Toledo/Emmanuel Baptist) came on and held the Yellow Jackets scoreless over the final 3.1 innings.
Mt. St. Joseph 6, Bluffton 3
The Lions roared to a 3-0 lead over Bluffton in the first inning. Brooke Babcock, who walked less than two batters a game throughout the regular season, issued three free passes to the MSJ hitters in the first frame before Kellie Kenney took over just one out into the contest. Following a Randi Yaeger fielder's choice, former Beaver Ashleigh Stallkamp doubled to the gap in left center, clearing the bases with two outs.
A hit batter, a single, a sacrifice bunt and a groundout to second base allowed Mt. St. Joseph to push another run across the plate in the second inning for a 4-0 lead.
Bluffton cut the Lions lead in half with a pair of runs in the bottom of the third inning. Mollie Brown (Fishers, Ind./Hamilton Southeastern) led off with a two-bagger to left center and went to third on a Tiffany Buckmaster (Lima/Bath) ground ball. Following a walk to Lindsey Miller, Allison White (Lima/Shawnee) came on to pinch run. She and Mollie Brown both scored after an MSJ wild pitch to make the score 4-2.
Brookbank drove in a pair of runs for the Lions in the top of the sixth, making the score 6-2 midway through the inning.
Torrie Wilson (Delphos/Jefferson) picked up Abby Snider with a sacrifice fly to center in the bottom of the frame, but a pair of mistakes on the basepaths ended the inning and Bluffton's season as the Lions held on for the 6-3 win over the Beavers.
Mollie Brown went 2-of-4 at the plate with one run scored. Kenney worked the final 6.2 innings on the mound, giving up three runs on five hits with just one walk.
Bluffton ended its season with a 25-17 record, including a 13-3 mark in the HCAC and share of the regular season championship.