Miami, Fla. - The Texas A&M-Corpus Christi softball team opened the season Friday morning with two tough losses at the FIU Combat Classic Tournament on the campus of Florida International University.
The Islanders opened the morning against the Jacksonville Dolphins, losing a close 1-0 decision. TAMUCC followed that game up by playing the Auburn Tigers immediately following the first game, dropping a 2-0 game to the SEC opponent who appeared in an NCAA regional last season.
The Islanders are now 0-2 on the season after the first day of the FIU tournament. Stacie Tassin pitched the entire game against Jacksonville to fall to 0-1 on the year. Addie Tallman started the second game and went the whole way as well to fall to 0-1 on the season.
"I was happy with the way our pitchers performed today." said Head Coach Jake Schumann. "We did outstanding with our pitching and defense and they gave us a great chance out there.
In the first game of the day, the Islanders were the home team against Jacksonville of the Atlantic Sun Conference. The Dolphins got the only run of the game when Amanda Smith singled to open the top of the second inning. Ashley Mora then followed with a walk to put runners at first and second. Brie Cormack followed up with a single to left center field to plate Smith and give the Dolphins their only run of the day.
The one run would hold up however, as the Islanders threatened but were unable to push a run across the plate. Their biggest threat was in the bottom of the third inning when Andrea Simancas singled on a bunt and stole second base. Lauren Sanders singled on the infield and advanced to second base while Simancas was able to take third base.
Kim Connelly struck out swinging but was able to advance to first base on an error by the Jacksonville catcher to load the bases. The Islanders were not able to do any more damage however, as Margo Hurdt lined out to first base for the first out, followed by pop-us to second base by Stephanie Estrada and Sandy Schumann to end the inning.
"It was a little frustrating that we weren't able to capitalize on opportunities we had today." said Schumann. "We just have to make adjustments better at the plate and we will be alright."
The Islanders were not able to threaten again; amassing only two hits the rest of the way to fall by the 1-0 final. Sanders and Larissa Martin led the TAMUCC offense with two hits apiece. Sanders had the only extra-base hit for the Islanders with a double. Simancas and Alaina Byars each added one hit to round out the offensive effort. Tassin pitched all seven innings, giving up one run on seven hits and two walks. She also struck out two Dolphin batters.
In the second game of the day, the Islanders faced off against Auburn. The Islanders were not able to get going offensively, being held hitless in the contest. The Tigers got single runs in the third and fourth innings to finish with a 2-0 final.
In the third inning, Megan Mitchell singled to center. Mitchell was then thrown out at third base when Kayla Tatum reached on an error by Alejia Cain, who recovered to get Mitchell out trying to stretch the play. After a line drive out for the second out of the inning, Tatiana Fernandez walked while Tatum stole second base. Myesha Finney singled to center field to score Tatum on an unearned run.
In the fourth inning, Lauren Guzman opened the inning by getting hit by a pitch and advancing to second base on a wild pitch. Alexa Martinez grounded out to advance Guzman to third base. Guzman then scored on a wild pitch for the second run of the game for the Tigers.
Tallman pitched six innings for the Islanders, giving up two runs, one of them earned, on four hits and three walks. Tallman struck out three Tiger batters in the game.
TAMUCC now gets ready to face off against Louisville at 9 AM tomorrow and then face host school FIU immediately following that game at 11 AM. The Islanders then play North Carolina on Sunday morning at 11 AM.
"We have two more tough tests tomorrow." said Schumann. "We should be able to come out and swing the bats better."