Nashville, Tenn. (2/21/14) – The Temple Owls started off their 2014 softball season with a 3-2 loss Friday against the Dayton Flyers in the TSU Tiger Classic Opener.
After hearing that the university would cut seven sports teams over the summer, women’s softball included, the Owls would have an even more focused goal to becoming AAC champions in their last year competing. However, Dayton felt no sympathy.
The former A-10 conference foe got to the Owls early with 1B Tiffany Ricks blasting a leadoff home run off Owls’ SP Kelsey Dominik in the bottom of the second putting the Flyers ahead 1-0. She would go on to finish 3-3 with 2 runs.
OF Julia Kastner, the ninth hitter, led off the third with a single to left and was moved to third by a double by SS Sarah Prezioso. Dayton’s SP Gabrielle Snyder then booted a Lacey McKeon hit to load the bases and provide Temple a chance to get on the scoreboard.
After C Stephanie Pasquale couldn’t drive in a run with a fly out to left, Snyder suddenly got wild as Kastner scored on a passed ball the Owls tying the game up at one. She ended up walking the pitcher Dominik as the Owls were once again in business. It turned out to be just a tease as Snyder fanned 2B Leah Lucas and 3B Devynne Nelons grounded out to second preventing a disaster.
Dominik contained Dayton in the next frame but the fourth was a different story. Ricks once again put the hurt on the Owls’ SP with a leadoff double and C Kasi Vazquez followed with a single. RF Katie Ryan knocked in the go-ahead runs with a double to left center putting Dayton up 3-1.
While putting up a solid job on the mound, Dominik tried to spark an Owls comeback as she crushed a leadoff home run in the top of the seventh. Up by one, the Flyers called for closer Emily Fremont to put the lead on lockdown. With the tying runner on second and two outs Kastner, who previously scored the Owls first run of the season, grounded into a fielder’s choice to end the game.
It was a tough opening loss for the Owls who were led by Leah Lucas going 2-3 at the plate while both Sarah Prezioso and Julia Kastner start the year off 2-4. Dominik, on the receiving end of little run support, starts the year off (0-1) going a complete 6.0 innings letting up eight hits, allowing three runs and striking out three.
The story of the game was the Owls going 0-11 with runners in scoring position. Not hitting people home put more of a challenge on SP Kelsey Dominik and made the game closer than what the score indicated.
SP Gabrielle Snyder (1-0) picked up the win for the Flyers in almost a mirror match performance with Dominik. She went 6.0 innings letting up eight hits, surrendering two runs and striking out three. Emily Fremont gets her first save of the season allowing two walks and a strikeout.
The (0-1) Owls take will take on the (1-0) Western Michigan Broncos in their next TSU Tiger Classic tournament game.
Nashville, Tenn. (2/21/14) – Looking to rebound from their opening loss in the TSU Tiger Classic Friday, the Owls made short work of the Western Michigan Broncos Friday throttling them 11-3.
Temple saddled the Broncos early blitzing them with seven runs in their first three frames. Everyone joined in on the fun with every starter getting at least one hit in the game. After the Owls jumped to an early 2-0 lead in the second, DH Stephanie Pasquale singled up the middle driving in CF Annie Marcopolus and SS Sarah Prezioso.
Up by four, the Owls continued to own Broncos SP Erin Binkowski with RF Julia Kastner crushing a three run homer to left. With the lead 7-0 and only in the third inning, Temple fans were thinking mercy rule.
The game already well in hand, 2B Leah Lucas joined the home run party with a three run blast of her own. 1B Kelsey Dominik, who was the SP opening game, also added a RBI single in the frame.
The Broncos, down 11-0 in the fifth, finally entered the scoring column with an RBI single by LF Melissa Palmer. After RF Mackenzie Ritsema drove in a run on a groundout, SS Sabrina Gamboa singled to right center to make the game 11-3.
Temple freshman SP Amanda Gatt (1-0) closed out the win, via groundout, as the Owls got their first victory of the season in a rout. Gatt finished with 5.0 innings, let up three runs on four hits and struck out one.
She had plenty of room to work with as the run support came in a hurry for the Owls. It was important to get a freshman pitcher confidence in their first start in division one. Up seven in only three innings, Gatt could afford to give up a couple hits while maintaining her composure on the mound.
The offense went an astounding 14-29 at the plate as Prezioso, LF Toni Santos, Pasquale and Dominik all had two or more hits. Lucas and Kastner drove in a combined seven runs.
Sabrina Gamboa led Western Michigan going 1-2 with an RBI. Broncos SP Erin Binkowski had a rough outing letting up 11 runs on 14 hits while striking out just two.
The (1-1) Owls continues their tournament run with games against a familiar foe in Western Michigan at 5 p.m. EST and host Tennessee State at 7 p.m. EST.