Softball Falls in Saturday Double-Header
JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. - - The offensive struggles continued for Belmont (7-22, 0-4) as the Bruins lost two games on the road to East Tennessee State to fall to 0-4 in conference play. Belmont lost game one, 0-2, and then got behind early in game two and was unable to recover, falling 2-10 in five innings.
For the second day in a row, Belmont was unable to generate runs with runners on base, stranding eight runners in game one and leaving seven runners on base in game two. In game one, the Bruins kept pace with ETSU, surrendering only two runs on four hits in the 0-2 loss. Belmont recorded three hits of their own, but was unable to put any runs across.
ETSU came out hot in the second game, building a 0-4 lead in the bottom of the first inning. Freshman pitcher Mia Vierra (Palmdale, Calif.) recovered from the rough start to pitch two scoreless innings before giving up two more runs in the bottom of the fourth inning. Sophomore Devon Schmidt (Greenbrier, Tenn.), who had surrendered only four hits in game one, came on in relief of Vierra. Schmidt would give up four runs on five hits in 1.0 inning of work. The Bruins scored two runs in the top of the fourth with Ashley Byers' (Westerville, Ohio) solo home run to lead off the inning. It was Byers' eighth home run of the season and the 18th of her career. She set the school record for home runs in a single season in the division one era with 10 last season, and is well on her way to breaking that record again this season. The second run of the inning came after freshman Ashley Hammer (Mt. Juliet, Tenn.) drew a two-out walk. Hammer moved to second on a single from junior Amanda Buntin (Brentwood, Tenn.). Freshman Kimberly Johnson (Tuscon, Ariz.) drew a second walk to load the bases. Junior Cassie Bollin (Madison, Tenn.) singled to right field to score Hammer. Vierra would strike out for the third out of the inning and leave the bases loaded. ETSU would score three more runs in both the fourth and fifth innings to end the game with a 2-10 lead.
Belmont will return to Nashville for a double header against Samford on Thursday, March 31st. The games will be the first played in the new E.S. Rose Park. The first game is scheduled to begin at 3:30 p.m. The next conference action for the Bruins will be a home double header against Campbell on April 2nd. The first game on Saturday will begin at 12 p.m.