Softball drops both games of MVC doubleheader


Aces look to win finale on Sunday

Saturday marked the beginning of the Missouri Valley Conference schedule for the University of Evansville softball team as the Purple Aces dropped a pair of home contests to Drake at Cooper Stadium.

Game one went to the Bulldogs (18-9, 2-0 MVC) by a 3-0 final before they picked up a 6-3 win over Evansville (7-17, 0-2 MVC) in game two.

Bulldog starter Nicole Newman was dominant, giving up two hits while striking out eight in the complete game shutout to open the day.  Morgan Florey was also strong, giving up three runs, two earned, on three hits.  She struck out eight and walked seven.

In the top half of the second, Taryn Pena delivered the first run of the game on a double to left.  The Bulldogs also scored a run on a bases loaded walk to take a 2-0 lead.  Brittany Hay recorded the first hit of the day for the Purple Aces, hitting a leadoff double, but could not make it past second base.  Florey notched the Aces’ other single in the seventh, but Drake was able to finish with the 3-0 victory.

Drake looked to be primed for a big inning to start game two as they loaded up the bases with no outs.  UE record the first out when Elyse Hickey threw a runner out at home before the next batter fouled out.  Just when it looked like the Aces would get out of the inning unscathed, Sarah Maddox singled to right to plate the first two runs.

After being held scoreless in game one, the Aces rebounded to with two runs in their half of the first.  Eryn Gould led off with a single before Elyse Hickey reached on a walk.  Next up was Morgan Florey, who delivered a single to left to score Gould.  Hickey would also score on a Bulldog error to tie it up.  Drake would retake the lead with an unearned run in the second.

Between the third and fifth innings, the Bulldogs threatened, leaving seven runners on base, but Ashleigh Downing was able to keep them off the board.  Her work was pivotal as UE had a chance to tie it up in the fifth.  Lindsay Renneisen reached on a double and attempt to score on a 2-out single by Downing.  A great throw from left field saw her get tagged out at the plate as DU protected its 3-2 lead.

The top of the seventh saw the Bulldogs put the icing on the cake with three more runs.  UE looked to rally with a run in the seventh on a Downing RBI single, but Drake finished the 6-3 win.  Tomorrow, the teams will play the series finale at 11 a.m. inside Cooper Stadium.