Missed opportunities haunt Patriots in PBC losses

Missed opportunities haunt Patriots in PBC losses

FLORENCE, SC – Francis Marion University missed out on no-out scoring opportunities in both games of Sunday's (April 10) Peach Belt Conference softball doubleheader as 17th-ranked Armstrong State University completed the sweep, winning by scores of 5-2 and 4-0.

Francis Marion (31-19, 9-13) will play a non-conference twinbill at North Greenville University on Thursday at 2 p.m.  The Patriots will play their final regular-season home games (Senior Day) on Saturday at 1 p.m. against the University of Montevallo.

FMU claimed an early 2-0 lead in game one thanks to an RBI ground out by senior designated player Sharee Blomquist in the second inning and a run-scoring single by senior third baseman Shannan Lopez in the third.  A two-out two-run single by Armstrong State's Ashley Sterritt knotted the score at 2-2 in the fourth. 

In the bottom of the fifth, junior outfielder Briana Barzola led off with an infield single and junior second baseman Taylor Brunson reached on a fielding error putting runners on first and second with no outs. However, Pirate starter Tori Bates (12-6) escaped the inning without giving up a run.

Armstrong State (32-10, 16-4) struck for the go-ahead tallies in the top of the next frame.  An RBI single by Autumn Parrish and a run-scoring ground out by Sierra Newman put the Pirates ahead 4-2.  Armstrong State added an insurance run in the seventh.

Five different Patriots registered a hit in the opener.  Senior right-hander Shelby Kelley (16-14) was tagged with the loss.  She allowed five runs on nine hits with two strikeouts and three walks.  Two of the free passes eventually came around to score.

Bates surrendered just one earned run on the five hits and fanned five.

In the second contest, the Patriots trailed 1-0 as they came to bat in the bottom of the fifth.  Walks to pinch-hitter Kaylee Childers and Blomquist and an infield single by junior center fielder Mikala Barnhart loaded the bases with no outs.  Armstrong State junior righty Jane Trzaska (12-3) retired the next three batters to extinguish the Patriot threat.

FMU senior first baseman Mykah Nevin had a hit in both contests.  Sophomore right-hander Samantha Wroblewski (15-5) was on the losing end of the game-two pitching decision.  She scattered eight hits, allowed four runs (two earned), and struck out three while walking one. 

Second baseman Peyton Roth was 2-for-4 with a run scored and an RBI for the Pirates in game two, while catcher Logan Harrell drove in a pair of runs with a homer and sacrifice fly.

Trzaska tossed a two-hitter with six strikeouts.

#17 Armstrong State Univ 5, Francis Marion Univ. 2 (Apr 10, 2016 at Florence, SC) (Game 1)
Armstrong State Univ 000 202 1 -  5  9  3      (31-10, 15-4 PBC)
Francis Marion Univ.   011 000 0 -  2  5  1      (31-18, 9-12 PBC)
Pitchers: Armstrong State Univ - Tori Bates and Logan Harrell. Francis Marion Univ. -
Shelby Kelley and Chelsea Welty.
Win-Tori Bates(12-6)  Loss-Shelby Kelley(16-14)  T-1:40  A-0
Weather: Mostly Sunny,51,Winds E @ 8mph


#17 Armstrong State Univ 4, Francis Marion Univ. 0 (Apr 10, 2016 at Florence, SC) (Game 2)
Armstrong State Univ 000 011 2 -  4  8  0      (32-10, 16-4 PBC)
Francis Marion Univ.   000 000 0 -  0  2  2      (31-19, 9-13 PBC)
Pitchers: Armstrong State Univ - Jane Trzaska and Logan Harrell. Francis Marion Univ. -
Samantha Wroblewski and Chelsea Welty.
Win-Jane Trzaska(12-3)  Loss-Samantha Wroblewski(15-5)  T-1:46  A-139
HR ARMST - Logan Harrell (6).
Weather: Mostly Sunny,56,Wind SSW@ 5mph