Bluffton vs. St. Francis
Beavers split home series with St. Francis
March 20, 2008
BLUFFTON, Ohio - The Bluffton University softball team braved the frigid temperatures on Thursday, March 20, 2008, and just missed out on a sweep of St. Francis when the Cougars pulled out a 4-3 victory over the Beavers in eight innings in the first game. Bluffton smacked 10 hits in a 7-4 win over St. Francis in the nightcap. The Beavers moved to 7-7 while St. Francis now stands at 5-10 overall.
St. Francis 4, Bluffton 3 (8 innings)
A Bluffton error in the top of the second allowed the visitors to push an early run across the plate for a 1-0 lead.
St. Francis took advantage of two hits, a wild pitch and another fielding error as Leigh Wells and Kassidy DeVree scored in the third for a 3-0 lead over the Beavers.
Bluffton responded with a pair of scores in the home half of the third to trim the deficit to a single run. Mollie Brown (Fishers, Ind./Hamilton Southeastern) and Jayme Marbaugh (Ohio City/Parkway) both reached as a result of Cougar miscues and when Amber Ludwig unleashed a wild pitch, they scooted around to make it 3-2 in favor of St. Francis.
A Marbaugh sacrifice bunt in the bottom of the fifth moved Brown into scoring position with one out. Following a Lindsey Miller (Wapakoneta/Wapakoneta) ground ball, Brooke Babcock (Findlay/Findlay) knotted the game with an RBI single up the middle.
The Cougars plated a run in the top of the eighth thanks to a Bluffton error on Devree's attempted sacrifice bunt, making the score 4-3 in favor of St. Francis.
With Kayla Williams (Elida/Elida) and Tiffany Buckmaster (Lima/Bath) both in scoring position and only one down in the bottom of the frame, the Beavers came up empty as the Cougars got the final two outs, preserving a 4-3 victory over the home team.
Mollie Brown led the Beavers with two runs scored. Despite giving up only five hits and one earned run in eight innings of work, Babcock (3-6) was saddled with the loss. She racked up eight strikeouts and did not walk a batter while tossing a complete game.
Bluffton 7, St. Francis 4
Following singles by Buckmaster and Brown to open game two, Lindsey Miller smashed a Tiffany Steinbrunner offering over the center field wall for a 3-0 lead and her fourth home run of the year.
St. Francis pushed single runs across the board in the third and fourth innings to cut the Bluffton lead to one run midway through the fourth.
The Beavers put the game on ice with four more runs in the home half of the fifth despite only two measly singles. Bluffton took advantage of a Cougar throwing error and a dropped fly ball to open up a 7-2 lead over St. Francis with only two innings to play. Miller and Marbaugh both came through with sacrifice flies before a wild pitch sent Marbaugh home. Kellie Kenney (Toledo/Emmanuel Baptist) scored the final Bluffton run when Williams delivered with an RBI single to right field.
St. Francis tried to make a game of it in the top of the seventh, scoring twice thanks to a pair of Bluffton errors and a Rochelle Rehm base knock, but Kenney quelled the comeback when she struck out Kyle Rosecrants to end the game.
Miller went 2-of-3 with 4 RBI and one run scored. Mollie Brown was 3-of-4 with two runs scored. Buckmaster and Williams both chipped in with two hits. Marbaugh crossed the plate twice for the Beavers.
Kenney (4-1) limited St. Francis to four runs, two earned, on seven hits with four strikeouts and only two walks for the victory.
Bluffton is scheduled to play Hanover at 1 p.m. on Saturday, March 22, weather permitting. The contest will be held at Bluffton if it is played on Saturday.