COLLEGE STATION, Texas – The Texas A&M - Corpus Christi softball team bounced back today with an 8-0 shutout victory in six innings over Connecticut on the second day of play at the Texas A&M Invitational. The Islanders collected their seventh double-digit hitting game of the season with 12 hits. In the second game of the day, A&M - Corpus Christi dropped a 10-1 loss to Wisconsin in six innings.
The Islanders (4-14) will conclude play in the Invitational tomorrow against Texas A&M at 11:15 a.m. The game was pushed up an hour from its originally scheduled time due to the chance of inclement weather in the area.
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GAME 1: TEXAS A&M - CORPUS CHRISTI 8, CONNECTICUT 0 – 6 INNINGS
The Islanders came out strong offensively in the bottom of the first to jump out to an early 3-0 lead. Brittney Morse started things off with her fourth home run of the year with a solo shot to left field. After Hayley Galloway grounded out, J.J. Jackson ripped a single down the left field line. Senior Valerie Perez then stepped to the plate and cranked her sixth career homer and third one this season over the right center wall to put the Islanders in front 3-0.
The Islanders padded their lead in the bottom of the fifth with one run on three hits. Liz Carter ignited the Islanders' bats with a single to right field to leadoff the inning. After Michelle Sorenson came in to pinch run for Carter, Dani Tefft reached on a fielder's choice, however Sorenson was called out on the play. Morse then followed with her second hit of the game with a base hit to left center to land Tefft on third. Galloway followed suit with a RBI single to center field to plate Tefft and advance Morse to second. The Huskies however pulled out of the jam, snagging two fly outs to end the frame.
A&M - Corpus Christi's bats caught fire in the bottom of the sixth with five hits to score four runs. After a pitching change for Connecticut, Mickayla Cochran recorded her first hit of the game with a single to center field. Natalie Zarzabal then drilled a base hit to left center before Mackinzee Griebel reached on a fielder's choice. After Cochran was called out at third, Carter blasted a RBI single down the left field line to plate Zarzabal and put the Islanders up 5-0. With runners on the corners, Tefft joined in and hit a RBI single to left field to score Griebel for the Islanders' sixth run of the game. Morse then came to the plate and registered her fourth double of the season to right center to score Tefft and Carter and secure the 8-0 win for the Islanders.
Carter was superb in the Islanders' circle picking up her fourth victory of the season. After Connecticut recorded a hit in the top of the first, the freshman did not allow a hit through the final five innings. She was also outstanding at the play, going 2-for-3 with an RBI. Fellow freshman, Morse, was also impressive, going 3-for-4 with three RBIs to power the Islanders' bats.
Carter secured the win after limiting the Huskies to just one hit and one walk while recording a pair of strikeouts in six innings.
Lauren Duggan (1-5) took the loss for Connecticut. She allowed seven hits and four runs while walking one and striking out one in five innings.
GAME 2: WISCONSIN 10, TEXAS A&M - CORPUS CHRISTI 1 – 6 INNINGS
Wisconsin scored a pair of runs in each of the first three innings before a four-run top of the sixth lifted the Badgers to a 10-1 victory over the Islanders.
Mary Massei led off the top of the first with a solo home run over the right center wall and after Maria Van Abel reached on a walk, Michelle Mueller hit a RBI double to left center to score Massei and put Wisconsin up 2-0.
In the top of the second, Sara Novak was hit by the pitch and advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt by Marissa Mersch before scoring on a RBI single by Caitlyn Warren. After a stolen base and an Islanders' throwing error put Megan Tancill, who came in to pinch run for Warren, on third, Massei hit a sacrifice fly to Tefft in left field to score Tancill and extend the Badgers lead to 4-0.
The Islanders answered back with a run in the bottom of the second on two hits. Cochran started things off with a single to shortstop and Zarzabal ripped her first career triple to right center to score Cochran and pull the Islanders within three. A&M - Corpus Christi followed with two groundouts to cap the inning.
Wisconsin tacked on two more runs in the top of the third on two hits. Mueller hit a home run to left center before Chloe Miller tallied the Badgers third home run of the game with a solo shot over the left field wall.
The Badgers followed with a four-run top of the sixth to take a 10-1 lead. With one out, Mersch walked and Tancill reached on an Islanders' fielding error. With runners on first and second, Massei hit a double to right field to score Mersch. Van Abel followed with a RBI infield single to plate Tancill. After Van Abel stole second, Stephanie Peace was hit by the pitch to load the bases for the Badgers. Miller then hit a two-run single through the middle to score Van Abel and Massei. The Islanders escaped the frame after Cochran snagged the pop fly in center field.
Perez went 2-for-3 to lead the Islanders' bats while Morse, Galloway, Cochran and Zarzabal each chipped in one hit apiece.
Carter (4-6) suffered the loss for the Islanders in the circle. She allowed five hits and six runs, five of them earned, while walking two and striking out one in three innings. Katie Blanar came in for relief and allowed four hits and four runs, just one of them earned, while walking one in three innings.