Hofstra’s two-game winning streak was snapped, as they fell to the 20th-ranked University of South Florida Bulls yesterday in Florida, by a final of 7-5.
This game was the second contest of a doubleheader, in which the Pride prevailed in the first game against Binghamton 14-6.
Hofstra got off to a slow start against the Bulls, allowing a two-run homerun to Bethany Keen in the top of the first inning. However, they roared back with a pair of RBI singles from first baseman Nikki Michalowski, who finished with three hits on the day. The game remained tied at two, until the top half of the sixth inning, where USF went on a five-run outbreak.
Bethany Keen once again got it started with a RBI single to bring in the go-ahead run. A few batters later, pinch hitter Kassandra Moeller broke the game open with a bases clearing double straight to center field to make it 6-2. Another single made it 7-2. In the bottom half of that frame, Hofstra answered with a two-run homerun from Lacey Clark to bring the deficit to three. The Pride got another run in the bottom of the seventh, but that was all they were able to get.
Hofstra pitcher Alyssa Irons went the distance, but recorded the loss. She gave up seven runs (six earned), 10 hits, and 4 strikeouts. The loss brings her to 0-2 at the start of this young season, with an ERA of 5.54.
For the Bulls, starter Kalen McGill only went 2 and a third, while giving up 2 runs. Reliever Cheyenne Eggens got the win, and Hannah Parker recorded the save. Hofstra had 10 hits on the afternoon, three coming from Nikki Michalowski, and another two from Lacey Clark.
Michalowski and Clark are having great starts to the season, as they improved their averages to .636 and .615 respectively for the first four games. Even though it has only been four games, Hofstra’s offense has been getting the job done. The Pride has six hitters that are hitting over .350 so far.
With the loss, the pride fell to 2-2 on the season, while USF improved to 5-3. Hofstra will look to take two out of three victories in the Michele Smith Tournament, when they face Wisconsin at 9:30 a.m. on Sunday.