Miami, Fla. The Texas A&M-Corpus Christi softball team finished play in the FIU Combat Classic on Sunday morning in a match up against the 18th-ranked North Carolina Tar Heels, falling by a 2-0 score.
"Even though it was a loss, we can go home with a positive taste in our mouth." said Head Coach Jake Schumann. "We played three teams ranked in the top 40 and kept them all either one or two run games."
The Islanders are now 0-5 on the season while North Carolina improves to 3-2 on the year. Stacie Tassin started the game for TAMUCC and is now 0-3 on the season.
North Carolina got on the board in the second inning with two outs. Emily Troup singled to right field and advanced to second when the next batter, Alyssa Francona was hit by a pitch. Dani Manko then singled while Troup advanced to third and scored on an error by Larissa Martin. The Islanders were able to get out of the inning while giving up only one run.
In the top of the sixth inning, the Tar Heels added to their lead when pinch-hitter Kelli Wheeler walked to start the inning. Brittany Robinson put down a sacrifice bunt to move Wheeler to second base. Troup walked to put runners on first and second, followed by Ally Blake with a single to center field, scoring Wheeler from second to go up 2-0.
The Islanders were never able to get going offensively on the day, as they got their only hit in the bottom of the seventh inning when Martin singled to left field. Stephanie Estrada followed with a walk to put runners at first and second, but the next two batters would strike out to end the game at a 2-0 final. Tassin pitched all seven innings, giving up two runs, one earned, on five hits and seven walks. She also struck out one Tar Heel batter.
"We played well defensively and had an opportunity in the seventh." said Schumann. "We just have to keep working to get better and get ready for our games at home."
The Islanders return home to face Houston Baptist in a double header on Tues. Feb. 10 at Chapman Field. The first game is scheduled to start at 1 PM. During the weekend of Feb. 13th, the Islanders will play host to North Texas, Indiana State, Creighton and Detroit Mercy in the Corpus Christi Invitational.