FGCU Softball Falls to Tournament Host USF, 4-2; Florida Game Postponed
Friday, February 10, 2012 | by Justin Glover (@Jglove3)
FGCU (0-1)
South Florida 2012 (2-0)
2/10/2012 | Tampa, Fla. | Attendance: 623
South Florida 2012000040X441
Win: S.Nevins (1-0) 2.262204
Loss: PUGH (0-1) 4.133231
LANIER (FGCU) 212201
KUJAWA (FGCU) 402000
G.Kafalas (USFSB12) 411100
S.Medina (USFSB12) 301100
K.Salvarola (USFSB12) 201100
A.Nowell (USFSB12) 311000

TAMPA, Fla. – The FGCU softball team fell to Tournament host USF, 4-2, on Friday night in its opening game at the USF Tournament at the newly renovated USF Softball Stadium. The second game against No. 2 Florida was postponed till the last game on Sunday.

FGCU will resume play tomorrow morning after No. 2 Florida finishes its game against Long Island, starting at 10:30 a.m. The Eagles will face Long Island and Maine on Day two of the USF Tournament.

In game one, FGCU rallied in the top of the seventh by scoring two runs off a two-run homer from sophomore Emily Lanier (St. Cloud, Fla./Harmony HS) but a four-run fifth inning proved costly as the Eagles’ fell to tournament host USF, 4-2.

“It was the best of times and the worst of times,” said head coach David Deiros. “This was a game we will look back on and say we should have won this one. We showed some mental toughness at times but the four-run inning cost us a very winnable game.”

FGCU finished game one with eight hits, including three for extra-bases after outhitting USF 8-4. Lanier was 2-for-2 with the homer and two RBI to lead the Eagles.

Junior transfer Britney Pugh (Pembroke Pines, Fla./St. Petersburg College) took the loss for FGCU after throwing 4 1/3 innings, allowing two earned runs on three hits.

The seventh inning began with two quick outs when pinch-hitter Kayla Ramey (Fort Myers, Fla./N. Fort Myers HS/Seminole State College) doubled to center and Lanier’s homer followed to cut the Bulls’ lead to 4-2. Junior Stephanie Kujawa (Cooper City, Fla./Cooper City HS/Virginia Tech) hit a shot off USF’s Sara Nevins that deflected into right field for a single to bring the tying run to the plate in freshman Kelsey Carpenter (Oviedo, Fla./Hagerty HS). Carpenter struck out looking to end the game for the Eagles.

In the bottom of the fifth, USF came up with a four-run inning to break open the game at 4-0. The Bulls used three hits, one error and two RBI singles to take the lead.

FGCU had another opportunity to score after redshirt junior Kayla Gabel (Lakeland, Fla./State College of Florida) led off the top of the fifth with a double down the right field line. After back-to-back outs from the Eagles, sophomore Emily Lanier (St. Cloud, Fla./Harmony HS) pinch-hit and delivered a single to left field but USF’s left fielder Ashli Goff fired home to nail Gabel at the plate to keep the game scoreless.

USF had a chance to break the tie in the bottom of the fourth when the Bulls’ Kourtney Salvarola hit a one-out double off the wall in center. USF’s Kenshyra Jackson followed with a foul out to sophomore shortstop Regan Knapik (Land O’Lakes, Fla./Wiregrass Ranch HS), who made a terrific heads up play to throw out the tagging runner at third base to end the inning.

After two no-hit innings between the two teams, FGCU had the first hit of the contest in the top of the third as sophomore Kirsten Bembnowski (Palm Harbor, Fla./East Lake HS) roped a single to right centerfield. The Eagles put runners on first and second after a two-out walk from sophomore Tori Williams (Dunnellon, Fla./Dunnellon HS) but Kujawa struck out swinging to end the threat.

Live stats, in-game Twitter updates (@FGCUEagles), results and recaps will be available at www.FGCUAthletics.com.

USF-Fairfield Inn & Suites Tampa North Tournament Games (Updated Schedule)

Friday, February 10
FGCU vs. USF, L, 4-2
FGCU vs. No. 2 Florida, postponed

Saturday February 11
FGCU vs. Long Island, 11:15 a.m.
FGCU vs. Maine, 1:30 a.m.

Sunday February 12
FGCU vs. Illinois State, 11:15 a.m.
FGCU vs. No. 2 Florida, TBA