FGCU Softball Falls to Lipscomb in Final Game of Weekend Series
|Win: PARKER (6-8)||4.0||1||1||1||2||5|
|Loss: OWEN (6-4)||3.0||5||3||3||1||4|
FORT MYERS, Fla. – The FGCU softball team (24-12, 5-3 A-Sun) was defeated 7-5 by fellow A-Sun member Lipscomb at the FGCU Softball Complex on Saturday afternoon to complete a three-game sweep for the Bisons of the Eagles.
Lipscomb now sits at 17-16 overall this season while being at .500 in A-Sun play with a 6-6 mark in conference contests. FGCU now trails the all-time series 7-6 after Lipscomb took all three contests over the weekend.
2012 A-Sun Pitcher of the Year Shelby Morgan (High Springs, Fla./Santa Fe HS) got the start for FGCU against Lipscomb and put in four innings of work on the day after having pitched a seven-inning complete game on Friday afternoon against Lipscomb.
In the home half of the second, FGCU had runners on first and third base with one out and Regan Knapik (Land O’Lakes, Fla./Wiregrass Ranch HS) at the plate. Knapik swung at the first pitch she saw and drove it up the middle for a base hit to bring in Jessica Barnes (Winter Haven, Fla./Haines City HS) from third, making it 1-0 in favor of the Green and Blue.
With runners on first and second, the Bisons used a base hit through the middle of the infield to bring a game-tying run across in the top of the third. The single put runners back on first and second and the double to left center that followed gave Lipscomb its first lead of the day, with a 2-1 score.
Looking to get back in the lead, FGCU did just that in the bottom of the third inning. Kirsten Bembnowski (Palm Harbor, Fla./East Lake HS) stepped to the plate and sent a high fly ball down the left field line and over the fence with two outs and runners in scoring position for a three-run home run that put the Eagles up 4-2 at the end of three innings.
Lipscomb would counter with a long ball of their own in the top of the fourth to cut the lead to one-run, with FGCU still ahead, 4-3.
In a relief effort, Jackie Owen (Cape Coral, Fla./Daytona State College) entered the game in the top of the fifth for Morgan. With the bases loaded and no outs in the top of the fifth inning, FGCU found themselves in a jam as they looked to hold on to its one-run lead. After Lipscomb brought one run across to tie the game, the Green and Blue used a double play to get the first two outs of the inning. The Bisons brought across a go-ahead run to go up 5-4 before Owen got the third out of the inning by strikeout.
The visiting Bisons would pad their lead in the top of the seventh on an extra base hit that brought around a pinch runner from first base to make it a 6-4 game. Lipscomb would extend their lead when Kristen Sturdivant homered to deep left field for a one-run home run, making the score 7-4 as the game turned to the bottom of the seventh.
With two outs in the bottom of the seventh, Bembnowski stepped to the plate and hit her second home run of the day out of the FGCU Softball Complex to make it 7-5 after her solo shot. The Eagles were unable to come any closer in the game and fell by a score of 7-5, giving Lipscomb a three-game sweep.
The three consecutive losses marks the first time that has happened to the Eagles since Feb. 17-18 of the 2012 season when FGCU lost on its home field in the FGCU Tournament Sponsored by La Quinta at the Airport in three consecutive contests.
FGCU will hit the road for a six-game trip in the state of Georgia to take on Mercer and Kennesaw State. The Green and Blue will start their road stint on Saturday, April 6 with a doubleheader against Mercer at 1 p.m.
In-game Twitter updates (@FGCU_Softball), results and a recap from the day’s action will be available at www.FGCUATHLETICS.com.
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