Feb. 9, 2013
Pirate Classic Tournament Central | Rider Box Score | Ohio Box Score | Photogallery
GREENVILLE, N.C. - The East Carolina University softball team (2-2) continued its play on the second day of the Pirate Classic on Saturday, Feb. 9, with another pair of split games at ECU Softball Stadium. The Pirates took the first game in five innings by an 8-0 score over Rider, but then dropped the night cap to Ohio by an 8-1 score. The loss to the Bobcats was the second one in as many days.
Freshman Casey Alcorn totaled four hits in her five at-bats on the day and also reached base with a walk. The Hummelstown, Pa. native ran her consecutive base-reaching streak to seven straight plate appearances before committing the first out of her career against Ohio. She walked twice on Friday in a pinch hit role against Cleveland State and Ohio, went 3-for-3 against Rider in her first career start in Saturday's first contest, recorded a hit and a walk in the team's evening nightcap against Ohio, before going down swinging in her final at-bat.
In the first game, the Pirates used a quick change of momentum from Rider having loaded the bases in each of the first two innings to plate five runs in bottom of the second inning.
ECU looked to be in serious trouble in the opening stanza against the Broncs. Freshman Mary Beth Smith, in the first start and second appearance in the circle of her young career, gave up a one-out single to Amanda Irving. Irving moved to second as Allysen Breeden walked. Dani Sensi then followed with a single through the left side to load the bases. Smith slowly began to steady herself and recorded back-to-back strikeouts, both looking, to stem the tide and keep the game scoreless after the opening frame.
The Pirates offense awoke with five runs in the bottom of the frame. Junior Jasmine Robbins was hit by a pitch to start the inning. Senior Kai Clark followed with her first home run of the season to give the Pirates a 2-0 advantage. Alcorn then rapped a single through the left side. The hit was the first of her career. Chelsea Kaluhiokalani-Glackin recorded a bullet off the Rider pitcher to move Alcorn to second. Junior Jill Jelnick then punished a single to right field that went under the glove of the hard charging Broncs' right fielder and rolled to the wall to score all three base runners for a three-run error to increase the margin to 5-0.
ECU added a single tally in the third inning. Alcorn singled, moved to second base on a hit and then third on a wild pitch, before racing home on a Jelnick ground out to the second baseman.
The Pirates finished the run-shortened game on Alcorn's first career home run after Kai Clark began the frame by reaching on a walk.
Smith (1-0) won the first game of her career in the victory over Rider. She pitched four shutout innings and recorded a pair of strikeouts before giving way to sophomore Courtney Smith for the fifth inning. Courtney Smith continued the strong pitching with a scoreless inning to help preserve the program's first shutout of the season.
It was a rough start for ECU in the second game with Ohio scoring five runs in the opening stanza. Alexia Cortez struck out, but reached first on a pass ball. She then stole second and raced in with the first run of the game on Sloan Walker's single. Walker, who moved up to second on the attempted play at the plate, scored on Lauren Gellerman's RBI single. A walk to Caitlin Colvin and a fielder's choice sacrifice bunt attempt, in which no outs could be recorded, loaded the bases for D.J. Engelman. Engelman wasted no time with a two-run double to score Gellerman and Colvin. Timmie Rappie drove in the final run of the inning with a ground out.
The Pirates got one of the runs back in the third inning, as Kristi Oshiro tripled and then scored on Alex Fieldhouse's single up the middle.
Ohio added two additional runs to the advantage in the fifth. Gellerman tripled to right center and scored on Colvin's single up the middle. Elizabeth Eyrise was inserted to run for Colvin and moved up to second on a fielder's choice and then third on a throwing error before scoring on Engelman's ground out.
The Bobcats finished their scoring with a single run in the seventh on Colvin's home run to center.
The Pirates' offense had numerous chances to close the gap throughout the game and stranded a total of 12 runners in the contest including at least one runner in six of the seven innings.
The sixth inning looked particularly promising for East Carolina. Junior Jordan Lewis led off the frame with a single. After a pair of strikeouts, freshman Kelsi Briggs entered as a pinch hitter and was hit by a pitch before Jelnick singled to left field to load the bases. A ground out ended the inning though and allowed the Bobcats to escape with the win.
ECU continues hosting the Pirate Classic on its third and final day as the Pirates take on the Towson Tigers on Sunday, February 10, at 1:00 p.m.