FGCU Wins Second Game of Twin Bill at USF Under Armour Invitational
Saturday, March 03, 2012 | by Justin Glover (@Jglove3)
Photo by Jim Dostie
Photo by Jim Dostie
South Dakota State (2-4)
FGCU (7-11)
3/3/2012 | Clearwater, Fla. | Attendance: 75
South Dakota State1100000241
Win: Pam Nicholson (1-2) 7.031148
Loss: PUGH (1-6) 7.042134
Alex Landon (SDSU) 301000
Tina Winter (SDSU) 201110
Krista Honken (SDSU) 301000
Sammy Bingham (SDSU) 201110
BARNES (FGCU) 302100

CLEARWATER, Fla. – The FGCU softball team split a pair of games to South Dakota State, 2-1, and defeated Bowling Green, 6-1, on Saturday night at the USF Under Armour Invitational at the Eddie C. Moore Complex.

The Eagles are 8-11 on the season, while South Dakota State improves to 2-4 and Bowling Green falls to 6-4.

FGCU continues to receive great pitching this tournament as the Eagles fell 2-1 in game one against South Dakota State.

The Jack Rabbits took the early lead with runs in the first and second innings as an early error allowed a run to score in the top of the first, off an RBI single from Tina Winter. South Dakota State manufactured their run in the second inning as Marlee Petersen drew a lead-off walk, advanced to second on a Kelly Kleppin sacrifice bunt, and then scored on a Sammy Bingham double to give the Jack Rabbits a 2-0 lead.

The game remained 2-0 until FGCU made a late rally in the bottom of the sixth. Sophomore Jessica Barnes (Winter Haven, Fla./Haines City HS) singled and stole a base to open the frame, followed by a walk from sophomore Brittney Garabedian (Miami, Fla./Gulliver Prep HS). With runners on first and second, freshman Kelsey Carpenter (Oviedo, Fla./Hagerty HS) laid down a perfect bunt down the first base line to give the Eagles bases loaded with no outs. Sophomore Emily Lanier (St. Cloud, Fla./Harmony HS) lined out to the shortstop, pinch-hitter Kayla Ramey (Fort Myers, Fla./North Fort Myers HS/Seminole State College) struck out swinging after a long at bat and junior Mariah Fernandez (Cape Coral, Fla./North Fort Myers HS) popped out to second base to end the threat.

The Green and Blue would get another opportunity to tie the game in the bottom of the seventh. The Eagles used a pair of walks and a sacrifice bunt by Regan Knapik (Land O’Lakes, Fla./Wiregrass Ranch HS) to put runners on second and third with one out. Barnes drove in the run with a sacrifice fly, but Garabedian fouled out to second base to end the game. Barnes finished the game 2-for-3 with an RBI and two stolen bases.

Junior Britney Pugh (Pembroke Pines, Fla./St. Petersburg College) was the tough luck loser for the Eagles after throwing a complete game, allowing four hits one earned run with four strikeouts. Pam Nicholson earned the victory for South Dakota State, allowing three hits, with four walks and eight strikeouts for her first win of the season.

In game two, FGCU got another gem from sophomore pitcher Amanda Josie (Estero, Fla./Estero HS), who has been consistent all spring for the Eagles, earning her first career victory in the circle against Bowling Green, 6-1. Josie finish six strong innings, allowing just three hits one earned run and two strikeouts.

Three FGCU hitters had two hits with sophomore Chelsea Zgrabik (Venice, Fla./Venice HS) going 2-for-3 with an RBI. Fernandez and Garabedian also went 2-for-3 with Fernandez collecting three RBI in the contest.

The Eagles trailed in the game after Bowling Green’s Katie Yoho hit a solo home run on a 3-2 count to take a 1-0 lead in the top of the second.

FGCU quickly tied the game in the bottom of the second as Zgrabik smoked a shot to the right fielder that was misplayed and went all the way to the fence to put Zgrabik at third with one out. Fernandez followed with an RBI single to right field to even the score at 1-1.

The game remained 1-1 until the bottom of the sixth when the Green and Blue pounded out five runs on five hits to break open the contest at 6-1 FGCU. Junior Stephanie Kujawa (Cooper City, Fla./Cooper City HS/ Virginia Tech) singled with one out, followed by a team-leading fifth triple of the season by Carpenter to bring home Kujawa and Carpenter scored off the throw to the plate. Redshirt junior Kayla Gabel (Lakeland, Fla./State College of Florida) worked a walk, followed by a double from Zgrabik that scored Gabel from first. Garabedian singled to put runners on first and third as Fernandez laced a two-run double scoring two more runs.

Freshman pitcher Shelby Morgan (High Springs, Fla./Santa Fe HS) worked a 1-2-3 top of the seventh to finish the game for the Eagles.

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

USF-Under Armour Invitational
*Games played at the Eddie C. Moore Complex: Clearwater, Fla.*

Friday, March 2
Quinnipiac 1, FGCU 0
FGCU 8, Western Michigan 2

Saturday, March 3
South Dakota State 2, FGCU 1
FGCU 6, Bowling Green 1

Sunday, March 4
FGCU vs. Villanova, 12:00 p.m.