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Softball Stopped By Comeback

(Posted April 13, 2006)

Elizabethtown 4, Juniata 3
Elizabethtown 4, Juniata 2

HUNTINGDON, Pa. ? The Juniata College softball team found itself on the wrong end of a pair of comebacks Thursday afternoon as visiting Elizabethtown earned 4-3 and 4-2 victories over the Eagles in Commonwealth Conference action in Huntingdon Thursday afternoon.

Juniata took a 3-1 lead into the top of the seventh inning of game one, but then saw the Blue Jays push across three runs in the final inning. Kelli Thon delivered a bases-loaded single to bring home a pair of runs and put Elizabethtown in front 4-3. Lauren Hoover knocked in the first run of the inning on an RBI single. The Eagles then went in order in the bottom of the frame.

Prior to the seventh, all of the offense in game one came in the first inning. The Blue Jays pushed across one run in the first inning as Abbie Merrifield doubled home the first run of the game.

Juniata answered with three runs in the bottom of the frame to take control of the contest. A pair of infield errors brought in the first two runs of the game and then Liz Schmitt (H Frank Carey/Franklin Square, N.Y.) delivered an RBI single to make the tally 3-1.

From there both pitchers were in control. Juniata?s Renae Hobbs (Mount Union/Mount Union) did not allow a hit after the first inning until the top of the seventh. Hobbs was charged with the loss in the game as she went all seven innings, scattering seven hits and fanning five in the game.

It was the same story for the Blue Jays as starting hurler Alex Lee held Juniata hitless and off the scoreboard after the first inning. She allowed just one hit over seven innings to claim her fifth win of the year.

In game two, neither offense could get on the scoreboard until the fourth inning. That?s when Juniata broke through against Elizabethtown starter Tanya Konek and put two runs on the scoreboard. Schmitt led off the inning with a single and then came home on an RBI double from Gabie Benson (Mount Union/McVeytown). Jackie Morley (Archbishop Wood/North Wales) followed with another double to put Juniata on top 2-0.

The Blue Jays then answered with all four of their runs in the top of the fifth. An RBI double from Konek plated the first run and Merrifield singled home Konek to tie the score. Kelly Johnson then launched a two-run home run to cap the scoring.

Elsann Machotka (South Regional/Manahawkin, N.J.) was charged with the loss as she went 4 2-3 innings, allowing seven hits and four runs, while striking out two. Lizzi Bartosik (Penn/Granger, Ind.) followed with 2 1-3 innings of scoreless relief for the Eagles.

Lee came on in relief of Konek in the fifth and did not allow a hit over the final three innings.

Schmitt paced Juniata?s offense in the game as she knocked out a pair of hits. Marian Guzik led the Blue Jays with two hits.

Juniata will be back in action with a non-conference doubleheader on Tuesday at Seton Hill.

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Contact John Wall at wallj@juniata.edu or (814) 641-3132 for more information.