|Charlotte Drops A10 Tourney Opener to GW|
ST. LOUIS, Mo. - Despite a three-hit effort from rookie Alex Rogers, the Charlotte 49ers softball team fell to George Washington, 9-2 in the opening round of the 2012 Atlantic 10 Tournament Wednesday at the Billiken Sports Complex in St. Louis.
With the loss, Charlotte drops to 28-25 and will face the non-advancing team, third-seeded Temple (27-20) from the Temple/Saint Joseph's matchup tonight at 6:00 PM CT. George Washington improves to (23-28) on the season and advances to face top-seeded Massachusetts (35-11) tomorrow at 1:00 PM CT.
Errors proved to be costly for the 49ers, as Charlotte committed a season-high five errors in the game that resulted in eight of the Colonials' nine runs.
George Washington jumped out to an early 3-0 lead after tacking on three runs in the bottom of the third inning following a Julia Orlandi fielder's choice that saw two runs cross the plate followed by a perfectly executed squeeze play that brought home another run. In the fourth inning, GW's Amanda Zakeri contributed an RBI groundout that pushed the Colonial lead to 4-0.
Charlotte got on the board in the top of the fifth inning to cut the deficit to two, 4-2. Rogers singled, Lorena Vela walked and Bri Gwaltney notched a base hit to left to load the bases with Niners. Rookie shortstop Samantha Slade then drilled an RBI single to left, and the next batter, Chelsea Stamey grounded out to third, scoring a second Charlotte run.
Kalie Lang almost kept the inning alive, drilling a ball to third base with two runners in scoring position and two out in the frame, but the Colonials' third baseman made an outstanding snag to end the Niner threat.
George Washington added to its advantage in the bottom half of the inning with RBI singles by Autumn Taylor and Sandi Monynihan, followed by a two-run single by Samantha Dos Santos. The Colonials would later tack on final run in the sixth en route to the victory.
Despite giving up no earned runs through 4.2 innings, rookie pitcher Lexi Betancourt suffered the loss. She allowed seven hits and eight unearned runs, sitting down six and walking just one. Chelsea Lisikatos pitched the final 1.1 innings, surrendering one earned run on four hits with a strikeout.
Picking up the win for the Colonials was starter Heidi Penna (6-2), who pitched 4.1 innings and allowed both runs on seven hits while striking out two. Kara Clauss got the save after pitching 2.2 scoreless innings of relief.
Live stats for Wednesday's second contest will be available via www.charlotte49ers.com. Live audio and video will also be provided throughout the Championship to fans, free of charge.