Bluffton splits on third day at Rebel Games
Bluffton falls to Geneva before win over Alverno
March 9, 2011
KISSIMMEE, Florida - The Bluffton University softball team struggled at the plate most of the afternoon as the Beavers dropped a 3-2 decision to Geneva and won 4-1 over Alverno under the lights. The Beavers improved to 5-1 on the season after three days at the Rebel Spring Games.
Geneva used an RBI double by Christina Fuqua to go up 1-0 in the top of the third inning. She knocked in Martha Adams who looped in a two-out single to right field. The Golden Tornadoes used three singles, three walks and a hit batter to make the score 3-0 midway through frame four.
Bluffton finally cracked the scoring column an inning later. Shelby Wade (Delaware/Buckeye Valley) opened the fifth with a single to left center. Chelsie Osborne (Chillicothe/Waverly) was hit by a pitch and Natalie Nikitas (Jeffersonville, Ind.) reached when Geneva was unable to make a play on her sacrifice bunt. Two outs later, Ashley Manusos (Spring Grove, Ill./McHenry Community East) made it 3-2 with her two-run single to left center.
The Beavers managed just one base runner over the final two innings as Geneva held on for the 3-2 victory. The Beavers tallied just four hits. Stevie Cuttitta (Columbiaville, Mich./Clio) slipped to 2-1 after allowing three runs on six hits in 3.2 innings of work. She struck out four and walked three. Freshman Kayla Owens (Cincinnati/McAuley) did not give up a run in her 3.1 innings of four-hit relief.
A slow start by Bluffton in game two allowed Alverno to take a 1-0 lead in inning two. A leadoff walk and Stef Wilmore double put the home team on the scoreboard on top 1-0.
Bluffton pushed two runs across the plate in the fifth for the Beavers first lead of the game. Shelby Wade opened the inning with a walk and moved to second courtesy of a passed ball. Freshman Shelby Erford (Paulding), who pounded a game-winning homer against Bridgewater on Tuesday, came through again with an RBI single to left field. She stole second and kept on running as Alverno threw it around the infield, scoring the go ahead run for the Beavers.
A two-run sixth made the score 4-1 in favor of the Beavers. With the bags full, Erford delivered a two-run base hit to center which pushed Bluffton to a 5-1 mark after three days of action from the Rebel Spring Games.
Kristin Agauas (Bloomfield Hills/Andover) improved to 2-0 after allowing just two hits and one run in four innings of work. She fanned three and walked two. Kayla Owens nailed down her first career save, tossing three scoreless innings with two strikeouts and two walks.
Erford did the damage for Bluffton, going 2-of-3 with three RBI and one run scored. Meagan Price (Toledo/Springfield), who controlled the action behind the plate, added a pair of singles.
Bluffton will take on Baldwin-Wallace at OCSC on Thursday, March 10, 2011. The contest is slated for 3 p.m.