Game One Box Score
Game Two Box Score
AMBLER, Pa. – The Temple softball team stepped out of conference play for the final time this season, hosting Army for a doubleheader on Tuesday, April 20, 2010 at Ambler Field. The Owls dropped both games to the Black Knights, 5-2 and 9-8.
Army jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the second inning when Erin McClain opened the frame with a solo homerun and, one out later, Reanna Johnson hit another solo shot over the left centerfield fence.
The Cherry & White tied it up in their half of the third after Kristen Marris delivered a line drive homerun over the right centerfield fence, scoring herself and Christina Sykora, who had opened the inning with a walk.
The score remained tied at 2-2 until the top of the fifth when Army got to Marris for three hits and three runs. The inning included Johnson's second homerun of the game, this time a two-run shot that also scored Alexis AuBuchon who had reached with a single.
Neither team would score again and Army came away with the 5-2 win. Beverly Nordin (6-5) picked up the win, going the distance and giving up six hits to go with two earned runs. Marris (8-10) took the loss with 4.2 innings of work, allowing six hits and five runs, while striking out four to give her 93 on the season and move her into sole possession of sixth place on Temple's single-season strikeout list. Lauren Spoo pitched 2.1 scoreless innings of relief for the Owls.
Game two featured plenty of offense from the start with Army getting a run in the top of the first, taking advantage of a TU error in the frame.
The Owls turned around and pounded out five hits in the bottom of the inning, scoring three times. Temple chased Army starting pitcher Jessi Muckelroy after just 0.1 innings, touching the hurler for three runs on a Danielle Fagan three-run shot over the leftfield fence. The host team threatened to score more, loading the bases with none out, but Shawna Bleyl came in in relief and got out of the jam without further damage.
After another TU run in the second made it 4-1 for the home squad, Army exploded for a six run third to take the lead. Two singles and an error loaded the bases for the Black Knights, and Tiffany Held took full advantage, sending a 2-2 pitch over the right centerfield fence for a grand slam, sending Joe DiPietro to his bullpen. The starter, Crystal Nyman, left the game after 2.0 innings of work, five hits and five runs.
Temple got one back in the bottom of the frame, but Army added another two in to top half of the fourth to make it a 9-5 game. Rachel Knable led off TU's portion of the fourth with a solo homerun to cut it to 9-6, and that's what the score would remain for the next inning and a half.
In the bottom of the sixth, with darkness looming, Temple showed patience at the plate and Sykora and Krystle Metzler led off the inning with two walks. Gina Sciarrone hit a shot up the middle, but shortstop Alex Reynolds had it played perfectly and quickly tagged second to force out pinch runner Melissa Robbins for the first out. Sykora, however, used her speed to score from second on the play and cut it to 9-7.
Marris stepped in and singled up the middle to put two runners on again. One out later, Ali Robinson delivered a double to right centerfield, plating Samantha Dungan, running for Sciarrone, easily to make it a one-run game, 9-8. The Owls went for the tie on the play, sending Marris home, but a perfect relay from centerfielder Johnson to second baseman Clara Navarro to home nailed her at the plate for the third out. The game was called at the end of the inning due to darkness and Army came away with the 9-8 victory.
Bleyl (9-4) earned the win, pitching 1.2 innings, giving up six hits and two runs. Nordin came in to pick up the save, pitching 4.0 innings and allowing five hits and three runs. Despite getting no decision, Spoo pitched 4.0 innings, giving up four hits and four runs, none earned. She also fanned a career-high eight batters.
Temple is 14-23 overall. The Owls return to play on Friday, April 23, when they host A-10 rival Fordham in a 3 p.m. game. Army is 25-15.