Softball Sweeps the LaQuinta Inn & Suites FGCU Spring Break Tournament
Sunday, March 11, 2012 | by Justin Glover
Photo by Dennis Snyder
Photo by Dennis Snyder
FGCU (12-13)
Colgate (2-7)
3/11/2012 | Fort Myers, Fla. | Attendance: 132
Win: MORGAN (8-2) 5.263014
Loss: LeCoq (0-4) 6.077735
Dolfi (COLGATE) 302200

FORT MYERS, Fla. – Capping off a perfect 4-0 weekend, the FGCU softball team earned a pair of wins against Colgate, 8-3, and Stony Brook, 1-0, on the final day of the LaQuinta Inn & Suites FGCU Spring Break Tournament on Sunday.

FGCU closes out the tournament on a four-game win streak to improve its record to 13-13 overall, while Colgate falls to 2-6 and Stony Brook, who had their seven-game win streak snapped by the Eagles, drops to 10-4. The victory also gave the Green and Blue the tournament championship with a 4-0 record over the weekend. FGCU last won a tournament in 2011 with a 4-1 record at the Stevens Industries FGCU tourney.

“We played some great defense this weekend and received solid pitching,” said head coach David Deiros. “We are starting to gain some momentum with the way we played and I couldn’t be more proud of the players. We look forward to continuing to play great softball to prepare us for conference season.”

The Eagles defense and pitching were nothing short of perfect in the four games committing just one error on 84 putouts, while the FGCU pitchers gave up just three runs with zero earned runs in 28 innings of work.

Sophomore Jessica Barnes (Winter Haven, Fla./Haines City) finished the tournament with a .556 batting average with four runs scored, two doubles, three stolen bases, a home run and two RBI.

In game one, FGCU pounded out nine hits on eight runs to defeat Colgate, 8-3, behind a solid pitching performance from freshman pitcher Shelby Morgan (High Springs, Fla./Sante Fe HS) who threw 5.2 innings, allowing three unearned runs on six hits with four strikeouts. Morgan improves to 8-2 with the victory.

The Eagles quickly scored two runs in the top of the first after Barnes worked a walk to leadoff the game. After a fly out by freshman Kelsey Carpenter (Oviedo, Fla./Hagerty HS), Barnes stole second to setup sophomore Chelsea Zgrabik’s (Venice, Fla./Venice HS) at bat. Zgrabik blasted a two-run shot to left field for her first collegiate home run to give the Eagles a 2-0 lead.

In the top of the third, the Green and Blue added another run when Carpenter opened the frame with a single, followed by a stolen base. After sophomore Emily Lanier (St. Cloud, Fla./Harmony HS) struck out swinging, Zgrabik lined a single up the middle to score Carpenter. The Green and Blue put two more runs on the board in the top of the fifth as Barnes was hit by a pitch to start the inning. Barnes would steal second base, followed by a walk to Carpenter to put runners on first and second with no outs. Lanier moved them over to second and third with a sacrifice bunt. Zgrabik picked up her fourth RBI of the game with a sacrifice fly to score Barnes. Junior Mariah Fernandez (Cape Coral, Fla./North Fort Myers HS) gave the Eagles a 5-0 lead after an RBI single to center field scoring Carpenter from third.

In the top of the sixth, the Eagles scored two more runs after junior Kayla Gabel (Lakeland, Fla./State College of Florida) lined a pinch-hit one-out double to left center to score the sixth run of the game. Barnes made it 7-0 with a RBI single to left field.

The Raiders bounced back with three runs in the bottom of the sixth on three hits and one error. Colgate started the inning with a single from pinch-hitter Eileen Ornousky, followed by a sacrifice bunt from Alana Dyson to put a runner of second with one out. Haley Fleming worked a walk to put runners on first and second with one out. Tera Vaughn lined a shot to third base that was mishandled leading to an unearned run. Morgan struck out Jennifer Ortega, but Emma Dolfi roped a double down the line in left field to plate two runners to cut the Eagles lead to 7-3. Senior relief pitcher Morgan Campen (Rougemont, N.C./Northern HS) finished the inning with a fly out to left field.

FGCU added an insurance run in the top of the seventh as Zgrabik picked up her third hit of the game with a single up the middle. Junior Stephanie Kujawa (Cooper City, Fla./Cooper City HS/Virginia Tech) pinch-ran and stole second base to move herself into scoring position. Fernandez flied out to centerfield to move Kujawa to third with one out. Sophomore Kirsten Bembnowski (Palm Harbor, Fla./East Lake Hs) singled up the middle to plate Kujawa for the eighth run of the game.

In the bottom of the seventh, Campen finished the game with a groundout, walk, fielder’s choice and a groundout to third to seal the win.

In game two, sophomore Amanda Josie (Estero, Fla./Estero HS) picked up her first career complete game with another great performance in the circle. Josie (3-2) earned her second-straight shutout with a 1-0 win over Stony Brook, allowing only five hits with zero walks. Josie lowered her team-leading ERA to 1.58 after finishing the weekend with no earned runs in 12.1 innings of work.

The Eagles scored quickly as Barnes battled through a six-pitch at bat to line a home run to left field for her third of the season. Carpenter followed with a single through the left side and stole second base after Lanier struck out swinging. After a groundout by Zgrabik, Fernandez walked, but Gabel struck out swinging to end the threat.

In the top of the second, Stony Brook’s Bernadette Tenuto singled to left field to lead off the inning, followed by a sacrifice bunt from Taylor Chain to put Tenuto into scoring position. Jessica Combs lined out to third base for the second out. Tenuto moved to third on a wild pitch, but Josie got Gina Bianculli to ground out to third to end the inning.

Stony Brook had another chance in the top of the third after two singles put runners on first and second with two outs. Josie got out of the jam with a fly out to left field from Lauren Maloney to end the threat.

Sophomore Regan Knapik (Land O’Lakes, Fla./Wiregrass Ranch HS) went 2-for-2 to pace the Eagles at the plate.

In the top of the seventh, Josie set down the Seawolves in order 1-2-3 to finish the fastest game this season for FGCU in one hour and 12 minutes.

The Green and Blue return to the field on Tuesday to play Canisius and Northern Illinois at 4:45 p.m. and 7:00 p.m., respectively, at the FGCU Softball Complex.

Live stats, box scores, Twitter updates (@FGCUEagles), and recaps for every FGCU contest as well as the other tournament games are available at www.FGCUAthletics.com.

FGCU- LaQuinta Inn & Suites Spring Break Tournament Games
*Games played at the FGCU Softball Complex
Tournament Champs: FGCU
Friday, March 9
Stony Brook 13, Howard 1 (5 innings)
St. Francis 4, Howard (8 innings)
Stony Brook 10, St. Franics 3
Utah 5, Georgetown 1
FGCU 4, Georgetown 0
FGCU 2, Utah 0

Saturday, March 10
St. Francis 1, Georgetown 0
Colgate 1, St. Francis 0 (8 innings)
Georgetown 8, Howard 1
Stony Brook 10, Colgate 3
Utah 5, Howard 1
Stony Brook 1, Utah 0 (8 innings)

Sunday, March 11
Colgate 2, Howard 0
Stony Brook 4, Georgetown 3 (8 innings)
FGCU 8, Colgate 3
FGCU 1, Stony Brook 0