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JUNIATA SOFTBALL DROPS TWO TIGHT GAMES AGAINS TOP-RANKED MORAVIAN

(Posted April 9, 2004)


Moravian 3, Juniata 1
Moravian 4, Juniata 2

4/9/04--Huntingdon, Pa. ? The Juniata College softball team put up a valiant effort, but could not generate enough offense to derail the top-ranked team in NCAA Division III softball as the Eagles lost both games of a doubleheader against conference foe Moravian Friday afternoon in Huntingdon. Juniata fell in the first game by a 3-1 score, then lost another two-run decision 4-2 in the second game. Juniata is now 12-7 overall on the year and 3-5 in the Commonwealth Conference. The wins were the 20th and 21st in a row for Moravian as they improved to 21-1 overall and 8-0 in the conference.

The Eagles managed four hits in each game of the doubleheader which was not enough to support the solid pitching efforts Juniata put out. In game one, Renae Hobbs (Mount Union/Mount Union) held the Greyhounds to three runs, two of them earned, on seven hits in game one.

Hobbs traded zeroes with Moravian starter Meagan Hennessey for the first two innings. Juniata mounted one of its best threats in the bottom of the second as an error and a hit gave Juniata runners on second and third with one out. But Casandra Dutzer (Danville/Riverside) lined out to second and Hobbs was doubled up on the play get Moravian out of the jam.

The Greyhounds made Juniata pay by scoring the game?s first run. With two out Hobbs hit a batter, then surrendered two straight hits as Melissa Soroka drove in the run with a single.

A pair of hits and an Eagle error led to another run in the top of the fourth for Moravian. The Greyhounds then capitalized on a lead-off walk in the fifth as Leah Holmes came around to make the score 3-0.

Juniata would break through in the bottom of the inning as Hobbs got things started with a single. A wild pitch moved her to second then Amy Gable (Kennard-Dale/Stewartstown) delivered an RBI single to put the Eagles on the board. Juniata would bring the tying run to the plate in the bottom of the seventh, but couldn?t punch through as they fell 3-1.

Hennessey improved to 11-0 with the complete game victory. She scattered four hits and fanned four Juniata hitters.

Hobbs also led the Juniata attack with a pair of hits and a run scored. Gable had the lone RBI in the game. Amber Helsel (Claysburg-Kimmel/Claysburg) also had a hit in the game.

Juniata got behind early in game two as sophomore pitcher Jessica Darrow (Wellsboro/Wellsboro) allowed two runs on three hits in the frame. Richelle McWilliams had an RBI double in the inning that brought home the second run.

The Eagles would never overcome that two-run deficit as both teams scored single runs in the third and fourth innings. In the third, Jen Piston (Central Bucks East/Jamison) reached on an error, then came home on a single from Gable. After Moravian got the run back in the top of the fourth Juniata responded in the bottom of the inning. Allison D?Ambrosia (State College/Boalsburg) started it off with a single. A sacrifice bunt moved pinch runner Abby Sener (Donegal/Marietta) to second and came home on an RBI single from Jen Piston (Central Bucks East/Jamison).


Once again the Eagles would mount a threat in the seventh. Hobbs singled with one down. Juniata followed with a fielder?s choice and then Greyhound starter Donna Weiner allowed a walk which put the tying run on first. Weiner then induced a game-ending groundout to preserve the win.

Juniata got solid performances from Darrow and Lizzie Bartosik (Penn/Granger, In.) who pitched the final four innings. Darrow allowed three runs on five hits over three innings and was charged with her second loss of the season, while Bartosik yielded just one run and one hit in her four innings of work.

Weiner allowed four hits and two runs, one earned as she improved to 8-1 on the year.

Gable was 1-for-4 with an RBI in the game, while Piston, D?Ambrosia and Hobbs had the other three hits.

The Eagles will be back in action on Monday when they host conference foe Elizabethtown for a doubleheader.

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