JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The JU softball team split its Saturday doubleheader against Lipscomb, winning game one 4-3 in eight innings and falling 4-3 in game two. The two teams meet tomorrow to determine the series winner.
The Dolphins started game one off on the right foot jumping out to a 2-0 lead after the first inning.
Victoria Brown led off the bottom of the first with a walk and advanced to second after second baseman Codi Kelly laid down a sacrifice bunt. Brown then reached third on a passed ball. Catcher Sarah Simon then drew a two out walk to give JU runners on first and third. Simon attempted to steal second and got into a pickle with the Lipscomb infielders. Brown alertly took off towards home plate and scored while Simon was able to reach second safely. After a walk, short stop Karson Tuck hit a sharp line drive that hit off of the left fielder’s glove allowing Simon to score from second and put JU up 2-0.
The Lipscomb offense could not get anything going for the first three innings as Dolphin pitcher Cecile Gomez held them in check.
As the Bisons made their way through the lineup for a second time however, the Lipscomb batters started having success off of Gomez.
In the top of the fourth, the Bisons were able to manufacture a run to cut the Dolphin lead in half.
In the fifth inning, Lipscomb was able to take the lead.
After a leadoff home run and a single, Gomez was pulled as Brown went into the circle. Two passed balls sandwiched around a sacrifice bunt allowed the Bisons to take a 3-2 lead heading into the sixth inning.
The Dolphins were able to tie things up in the bottom of the sixth.
Third baseman Ashley Simon drew a leadoff walk. Tuck followed with a single that allowed Simon to advance to third. The Bisons second passed ball of the game allowed Simon to score from third and tie the game at 3-3.
Neither team was able to muster up a run in the seventh inning pushing the game into extras.
After hold Lipscomb scoreless in the top half of the frame, the Dolphins capitalized in the bottom of the eighth.
Tuck drew a leadoff walked and advanced to second off of a sacrifice bunt. After designated player Jackie DiPiazza walked to give JU runners on first and second, left fielder Jacey Warner laid down a sacrifice bunt to advance the runners. This brought Brown to the plate. She drove a pitch straight through the infield to bring home Tuck and give JU the 4-3 win.
The game-winning RBI gave Brown her seventh win on the season.
The second game of the day saw Lipscomb jump out the early lead with the Dolphins trying to play catch up.
The Bisons got on the board early with a two run home run in the top of the first off of Brown to stake them a 2-0 lead.
In the top of the fourth Lipscomb had yet again another two run home run to double their lead to 4-0.
In the bottom half of the inning, JU was finally able to crack through and score a run.
Kelly led off the inning with a home run of her own sending a pitch over the left field wall to cut the lead to three.
The Dolphins got the lead down to just one in the bottom of the sixth.
After a walk, Sarah Simon smacked her team leading eighth home run and 20th RBI to bring the score to 4-3.
Lipscomb was unable to add to their lead in the seventh leaving the Dolphins with the task of scoring a run if they wanted to extend the game.
Tuck started the inning off reaching first base after hitting a ball that the third baseman was unable to get out of her glove. After a sacrifice bunt, a hit batter, and another sacrifice bunt, the Dolphins had runners at second and third with two outs. This brought Brown to the plate with the chance to be the hero much like in game one. This time however she did not come through and popped up to the center fielder to end the game.
Brown (7-3) was tagged with the loss after surrendering four runs off of seven hits.
The Dolphins (15-8, 1-1 A-Sun) and Bisons (8-10, 1-1 A-Sun) return to action tomorrow at 1 p.m. to play the series finale.
Fans can watch the action live on ASun.tv