Tennessee, which defeated Pitt, 5-0 earlier on Friday, will next face host USF and Illinois on Saturday. UT plays USF at 4 p.m. ET and Illinois at 8:30 p.m. ET. Both games will feature free live audio on UTSports.com and live stats via GoUSFBulls.com.
COLLEGE STATION, Texas – The No. 8 Texas A&M softball team (7-1) run-ruled Oregon State (3-5), 8-0 in six innings, in the first game of the day before ending its winning streak with a 2-4 loss to McNeese State (4-3), Friday in the Aggie Classic.
In game one vs. the Beavers, Texas A&M took the lead in the third inning and never gave up a run in the shutout. Sophomore transfer Katie Marks (3-0) threw a complete game shutout in the circle, the second of her young Aggie career. Sophomore Cali Lanphear was 2-for-3 on the game with a double, a triple and four RBI.
A two-out double to left-centerfield by senior Cassie Tysarczyk put the Aggies on the board with a pair of runs in the bottom of the third. Freshman April Ryan drew a walk and senior Nicole Morgan hit a single to left field, each with one out, to reach base before Tysarczyk’s shot sent them home for the 2-0 lead on the Beavers.
Texas A&M stretched to a 7-0 lead in the bottom of the fourth. Senior Taran Tyler scored on a fielding error by the Beavers to start the rally, and an RBI base hit by Ryan kept the momentum going. With bases loaded, Lanphear stepped up to the plate and slugged a triple to left-centerfield to clear the bases.
It was Lanphear who came through again for the walk-off run-rule in the bottom of the sixth. Senior Amber Garza led off with a double to left field and, with two outs, Lanphear pounded her second extra-base hit of the game to right-centerfield. The double plated Garza and ended the game with an 8-0 Aggie victory.
Texas A&M held five Beaver runners on base throughout six innings as Marks earned her second shutout of the year. The Katy, Texas, native struck out five while walking two and allowing five hits. OSU’s Amanda Najdek (1-3) suffered the loss after giving up eight earned runs on 10 hits and six walks.
The tables were turned in game two as the Aggies stranded 11 runners against McNeese State, six of them in scoring position.
After leading off with an infield single in the bottom of the first, senior Emily Albus reached third but was sent back to the dugout when three straight outs ended the inning.
Lanphear drew a walk in the second and scored on a double to right-centerfield by Tyler for the 1-0 lead. Tyler became the second Aggie runner of the game to be left on base in scoring territory.
The Cowgirls scored a pair of unearned runs in the top of the third, after a dropped strike three that would have been the third out kept the action going. Both runs were sent home on base hits to the outfield.
Ryan gave the Aggies a chance to tie the game in the bottom of the inning when she reached on a double down the right-field line. Garza joined her on base when she was hit by a pitch, but again the Aggies were unable to produce a run.
McNeese State continued to advance on Texas A&M in the fourth when a pair of doubles and a walk scored two runs for the 4-1 lead. The Aggies responded in the fifth with a single run, but it wasn’t enough.
Junior Brittany Clopton led off with a base hit slapped up the middle. A bunt single by Albus sent her to second and Ryan added a third base hit to advance Clopton to third. Senior Nicole Morgan flied out to right field but sent the runner home from third for a sacrifice. With two outs, Tyler joined Albus and Ryan on the base paths, but the bags were left loaded and McNeese State maintained a 4-2 lead.
The Aggies loaded the bases again on two outs with Clopton, Albus and Ryan in the bottom of the sixth, but Clopton was thrown out trying to advance home to end the frame. Ryan was 3-for-3 against the Cowgirls, and Albus was 3-for-4.
Texas A&M junior Lauren Ainsley (1-1) took the first loss of the season after throwing four full innings from the circle. She allowed two earned runs on four hits and three walks, while striking out two. Redshirt junior Rachel Fox finished the game for the Aggies, allowing no runs on three hits and two walks with two strikeouts.
Cowgirl pitcher Jamie Allred (3-2) earned the win after giving up two earned runs on 10 hits and three walks. Allred struck out eight batters in the complete-game effort.
The Aggies return to action at the Aggie Classic tomorrow in a 3 p.m. rematch with McNeese State and a 5:15 p.m. game against Oregon State.
LSU Sweeps Day One At Tiger Invitational
BATON ROUGE, La. – The LSU Tiger softball team scored three big runs in the bottom half of the fourth hanks to back-to-back home runs from Kellsi Kloss and Allison Falcon, while freshman pitcher Baylee Corbello earned her second consecutive complete-game shutout to defeat the Northwestern Wildcats 4-0 in game one of the 2014 Tiger Invitational for LSU.
LSU (5-2) produced just four hits against the Wildcats (4-2), but made all of them count as Falcon accounted for two of the four, going 2-for-3 with an RBI and run scored, while Kloss went 1-for-3 with two RBI and a run scored. Sahvanna Jaquish had the only other hit for the Tigers on the night, scoring once.
Although Corbello didn’t reach double-digit strikeouts for the third straight game, she was able to work out of some sticky situations late thanks to some help from the defense, scattering four hits with eight strikeouts and six walks. The Lake Charles, La., native allowed two hits to the first two batters of the game and did not give up the final two until the sixth.
“She is doing a great job,” head coach Beth Torina said. “We will work to eliminate some of the walks, continue working ahead of hitters, and having the strikeout numbers she has been having.”
With very little opportunities after the first few innings, it looked like the Tigers were once again going to leave one stranded as Bell got hit to reach first base with two outs in the fourth. Instead, Kloss reared back and cranked one over the fence in center to give LSU the 2-0 lead.
On the very next at-bat, and with two outs still on the board, the Tigers got another big spark as Falcon took a 3-2 count into the seventh pitch in the showdown and drilled a shot over the fence in left field for the back-to-back jacks putting LSU up 3-0 over the Wildcats.
It was the 19th time in team history that teammates connected for consecutive home runs in a game, as the 2013 team did it twice.
“I think that is one of the best adjustments I have seen this team make in a long time,” Torina said. “I was really happy with that. They stepped up and made the adjustment. It showed right away.”
Corbello ran into her biggest hurdle in the top of the sixth inning, as Northwestern put two on with one out. After a pop fly to Blades at short, she gave up her first hit since the first inning to put the first on, with the Wildcats getting an infield single to put two on. Fortunately, a fly ball to center kept the runners at bay for the second out, with Corbello getting a big strikeout to end the inning and keep the shutout intact.
The freshman made it thrilling again in the final inning, walking the first batter of the frame to put one on. A fielder’s choice got the lead runner out at second for the second out, but another walk put two back on to put the pressure back on. All of it diffused on the very next at bat as Corbello got her final strikeout to close the door and seal the win for LSU.
Game Two: LSU 14, George Washington 4
After hitting her first home run of the season earlier in the afternoon, redshirt senior infielder Allison Falcon put the No. 21 LSU Tiger Softball team up for good with a grand slam home run in her second at-bat of the second inning in the midst of a nine-run explosion to lead LSU past George Washington 14-4 in five innings to close day one of the 2014 Tiger Invitational.
On the strength of three multiple run innings, LSU (6-2) scored all 14 runs on nine hits while taking 10 walks against George Washington (0-7), as Ashley Czechner earned her third win of the season allowing four runs, three earned, on five hits with six strikeouts and four walks.
Falcon was one of the three Tiger batters with multi-RBI efforts, as she set a career high with all four coming on her bomb in the second, finishing 2-for-2 with two runs scored. Simone Heyward drove in three and scored once, going 1-for-2, while A.J. Andrews was 1-for-1 with two RBI and two runs scored. Eight different LSU hitters registered at least one base knock on the night, as Alex Boulet, Jacee Blades, Sandra Simmons, Alayna Falcon and Constance Quinn each had one.
“I was actually thinking just to do something small like get a single,” she said. “I just had to see what kind of pitch I was going to get and do what I can with it. On the second homerun, I just wanted to get a couple more assurance runs for (Ashley) Czechner.”
After giving up a run to the Colonials in the first inning, the Tigers turned around and in the bottom half of that very same inning plated two runs with no hits thanks to GW miscues. A walk to Andrews opened the inning, as she would go on to steal second base after a strikeout to Blades. She would wind up on third after a passed ball. A walk to Simmons put runners at the corners, as she would goad the Colonial catcher into overthrowing second base allowing Andrews to score to make it 1-1 and advance Simmons to third.
Simmons gave LSU the 2-1 lead after scoring on a wild pitch with only one out on the board for the Tigers. Unfortunately, consecutive ground outs ended the LSU inning.
LSU broke through in a big way in the very next inning, getting a two-RBI single by Andrews to go along with hits from Falcon and Simmons to start to move ahead comfortably. But the inning really belonged to Falcon who came up to bat for the second time and went to a full count before launching a shot over the Berm in left to give LSU an 11-1 advantage. LSU scored all nine of its runs on just four hits in the inning, with six walks by George Washington pitching.
After a scoreless inning for LSU in the third while George Washington got two back in their half of that inning to make it 11-3, the Tiger offense came back to life, led by a bases clearing triple by Heyward to score Quinn and Alayna Falcon to make it 13-3. Boulet earned her RBI on the very next play as she singled to left scoring the speedy Heyward to put the Tigers back up 11.
“This night was definitely an example of how contagious hitting can be,” Allison Falcon said. “We got a couple runs, and I just wanted to keep the bat going and keep passing the bat. That is what our coach always tries to instill in us, to keep passing the bat and let the person behind you get an at-bat.”
Although the Colonials would put another run on the board in the fifth thanks to two hits, Czechner would close the door with a line out, strikeout and pop fly to finish the job and earn the victory.
LSU will be back in action tomorrow afternoon, taking on South Alabama and George Washington in day two’s action.
Auburn Wins Two in Tiger Invitational
AUBURN, Ala. - The Auburn University softball team dispatched Marshall and Loyola, 19-5 and 11-2 respectively, on the first day of the Tiger Invitational Friday. Both games ended after five innings when Auburn took over eight-run leads after the fifth inning, part of the 31 combined runs that were scored by the Tiger offense in both games.
The biggest offensive performance of the night came from juniors Branndi Melero and Morgan Estell. Both veterans totaled seven RBI in the two games on Friday with five coming against Marshall each. Six different players had multi-RBI nights on Friday. Following Melero and Estell were freshman Kasey Cooper, sophomore Emily Carosone, junior McKenzie Kilpatrick, sophomore Austyn West and freshman Jenna Abbott.
For Melero and Estell, Friday's performance continues their torrid pace to start 2014. Melero currently leads the team with 16 RBI, as Estell is closely behind with 13. Kilpatrick is the only other Auburn player to have a double-digit RBI total at this point in the season.
"For us to be successful this year, we're going to have to swing the bats," Auburn head coach Clint Myers said. "It's nice to see the bats working, one through nine. When we can score double-digits, that's a good sign for us."
In the circle, sophomore Lexi Davis picked up the win in game one against the Thundering Herd. Davis went four innings and gave up only three earned runs with three strikeouts. For Davis, it's her third win of the year and keeps her ERA for the season at 1.77.
Sophomore Marcy Harper got the start in game two against Loyola. She, also, had another stellar outing, going a complete five innings and giving up only two earned runs on four hits with five strikeouts. Since not being factored in the decision in the first two games of the season, Harper has had three-straight quality starts, giving up only six earned runs and tallying 10 strikeouts.
"Marcy's getting better," Myers said. "She's making quality pitches. We just have to keep her in the circle and each time she's going to get better and better."
Auburn didn't need much to get the game going against Marshall as it put up a five spot in the opening frame, getting a grand slam from Melero, her third homer of the year. The Tigers added one more after batting around and getting an RBI single from Carosone to score West.
After the Orange and Blue scored again in the second to make it 6-0, Marshall cut the lead in half in the third and looked to chase Davis from the circle early. However, Auburn responded in the bottom half of the inning, scoring two more runs on the backs of an Estell double to left-center, one of Estell's two hits in the game.
In the fourth inning, Auburn scored 11 runs to push their lead to 19-3. Many of the Tiger runs benefitted from the seven Marshall errors that were notched in the game, but, nonetheless, the Tigers posted their largest single-inning total (11) since scoring 11 against Kentucky on May 3, 2008. Auburn wouldn't get any more in the game, but the 19 runs scored was the most since it scored 19 against Mercer on Feb. 18, 2006.
In game two, Auburn, once again, jumped out to a lead, scoring four runs in the opening inning against Loyola. After a lead-off single by Carosone, Estell launched her third home run of the year to left field, giving the Tigers a quick two-run boost. Later in the inning, with Melero on second, West hit the team's second home run of the inning. The long ball was West's second of the young year and gave AU a 4-0 lead after one inning.
Much of the story in game two came from the pitching performance by Harper, as she allowed only one run in the second and third innings. She was able to get plenty of run support from her teammates as they continued to have a great offensive night, plating two runs in the second and three in the third to push their lead over the Ramblers to 9-2 after three innings.
Needing only one more run to get over the eight-run plateau, the Tigers scored two in the bottom of the fifth after Cooper singled home Estell and Carosone to end the game. Cooper finished the game 1-for-2 with her lone hit being the game winner.
"We've been preaching that you have to know your zone and you have to know the umpire's zone," Myers said. "Until you have to swing at the umpire's zone, we're going to swing at our zones. We did a pretty good job of that tonight."
Auburn returns to the field tomorrow for its second day of the Tiger Invitational at Jane B. Moore Field. It will face Nebraska-Omaha at 3:30 p.m., followed by its matchup with Western Illinois at 5:30 p.m. The first game of day two of the Tiger Invitational will feature Loyola against Marshall, starting at 9 a.m.
The Auburn games can be heard locally on WEGL 91.1 or online at AuburnTigers.com. Live video and live stats will also be available on AuburnTigers.com throughout the weekend for all games.
All home games at Jane B. Moore Field this year will require a purchased ticket unless otherwise specified. All ticket information can be found here on AuburnTigers.com.
For more information on Auburn softball, visit AuburnTigers.com, follow the team on Twitter @AuburnTigersSB or follow them on Facebook at Facebook.com/AuburnSB.