Sailfish and Moccasins Split Saturday Match Up at Lake Catherine
April 9, 2011
Written By: Michael Brown, Assistant A.D. for Athletic Communications
PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla.- Two well-played games by both teams were on display on Saturday afternoon as a nice-sized crowd gathered at the Lake Catherine Sportsplex to witness a double-header between Palm Beach Atlantic University and Florida Southern College. Junior Chris Donovan led the way in the opener as she pitched the Fish to a 5-2 victory while Moccasins lefty Christine Clark shook off the game one loss to hurl game two for FSC as she and her team claimed victory by a 5-3 final in game two.
Two similarly matched teams with nearly identical records, the Fish (20-14) and Mocs (20-15) were meeting for the first of four games between Saturday and Tuesday, April 12th in Lakeland as they will square off again in another double-header.
Donovan was solid if not spectacular on Saturday as she battled a pesky Moccasins lineup in warm conditions experienced by both teams as the bright sunshine showed itself throughout the afternoon with temperatures near 90 degrees.
Donovan posted her 12th complete game of the season as she improves to 12-5 after allowing only six hits and two runs while scattering four walks and striking out five.
The Sailfish backed their right-handed pitcher with a pair of runs in the first inning as the bats came out swinging with authority.
Freshman Lauren Powell led off the game with a double to the left-centerfield fence then advanced to third ahead of a throw by the FSC first-baseman on an Erica Walters sacrifice bunt attempt to put runners as the corners with no outs.
After a popout, senior Caitlin Bouschet fouled off a number of tough 3-2 pitches and ripped a line drive into the right-centerfield gap for the game’s first run. Mari Stokes legged out a fielder’s choice to plate Walters to push the PBA lead to 2-0.
The Moccasins took advantage of a pair of two-out walks by Donovan in the top of the third inning as Randi Grimes connected for a two-run double to left-center to tie the game at 2-2.
The Sailfish put the game back in their favor with a three-run fourth inning as Brittany Jones and Kimberly Traxler hit back-to-back singles which setup a well-placed bunt from Miranda Welch that got past the charging FSC first-baseman and allowed the speedy Jones to score from second-base. After Powell was hit by a pitch to load the bases, Walters chipped in a two-run single to cap the scoring in the inning for PBA.
Neither team would score in the final two innings as Donovan shut down the Florida Southern offense the rest of the way.
PBA rapped out ten hits in the opening game led by two each from Powell and Jones with each player scoring a run. No FSC player would register a multi-hit game.
Game two featured Christine Clark returning to the circle for FSC with much better success the second time around as she limited the Sailfish offense to nine hits in her complete game effort as she improved to 17-8 with the win.
Palm Beach Atlantic countered with junior Lauren Bubeck (7-6) who allowed four runs (two earned) on six hits with two walks in 2.1 innings of work. Freshman Brianna Parker provided some solid relief by allowing only one run over 4.2 innings of time in the circle.
The Sailfish jumped ahead with a run in the bottom of the first as they loaded the bases with nobody out after a Powell single and back-to-back walks to Walters and Caitlin Bouschet. Clark would buckle down however and allow only a sacrifice-fly RBI off the bat of Jones as the Fish managed just the one first-inning run.
The Mocs took the lead with a two-run second inning as a pair of PBA throwing errors led to an eventual Dani Blake RBI single that squeezed through the middle of the diamond into short center-field.
The Blue and White would tie the game at 2-2 in the bottom of the frame as Powell connected for another single that drove home Walters.
The scoring opportunities would not let up however for the Moccasins as they scored two more runs in the top of the third inning that eventually ended the day of Bubeck in the circle for PBA. Clark produced a run-scoring single as did Khaliah Brown to move ahead 4-2.
FSC added one more run in the top of the fourth as insurance on a Brittany Martin RBI single.
The Fish nearly came through with a big hit in the sixth inning as Walters drove home a run and then a walk to Bouschet loaded the bases with two outs for Stokes. Despite a sharp line-drive appearing to be destined for the gap, FSC centerfielder Dani Blake hauled in the hard-hit ball as it completed the inning.
Powell finished 3-for-4 in game two for PBA as did Welch who also scored two runs and played a solid third-base.
Martin was joined by Clark as players to go 2-for-4 in game two for Florida Southern.