Softball Secures Sweet Sweep Over Visiting Florida Tech in Season Opener
February 1, 2012
Written By: Michael Brown, Assistant A.D. for Athletic Communications
PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla.- The Palm Beach Atlantic University softball team opened up the 2012 season on Wednesday evening with an outcome of exactly what they wanted: a sweep. The Sailfish saw solid pitching performances from all three of their hurlers while the defense helped key a pair of victories over Florida Tech as the two teams squared off at the Lake Catherine Complex in Palm Beach Gardens.
Newcomer Mary Pippin (1-0) went the distance in game one as the Fish defeated the Panthers (0-2) by a 5-1 final while it would take some late offense by PBA in the sixth inning of game two to break a 0-0 tie that ended with Palm Beach Atlantic securing a 2-0 win for the sweep.
The Fish wasted little time putting runs on the board as they scored three runs in the bottom of the first to stake Pippin to the early advantage.
Leadoff batter Kara Anderson showed off her electric play with a bunt single to begin the game followed by a steal of second base, advancing to third on a wild pitch and then scoring later in the inning on a RBI infield single from senior Mari Stokes.
A sharp single up the middle later in the inning off the bat of junior Miranda Welch plated two more runs as Lisa Santos and Stokes both came hustling around to put PBA in front 3-0.
From that point it would be Pippin and the PBA defense putting up zeroes for the next two innings before a FIT unearned run would come home to score in the top of the third inning on a RBI groundout from Amanda Bueno to cut into the PBA lead at 3-1.
The Sailfish added single runs in the fourth and sixth innings as Anderson first delivered a run-scoring triple that scored Welch in the fourth and then another RBI hit from Anderson in the sixth as her single plated Stokes to move ahead 5-1.
Pippin cruised to the win as she tossed seven innings while allowing no earned runs on four hits while striking out eight and not walking a batter.
Anderson finished 3-for-4 in her PBA debut with two runs driven in and another run scored. The only out recorded against Anderson in the game came after she scorched a shot to FIT right-fielder Lauren Cole who made a diving fully-extended grab.
Stokes and Welch each finished 2-for-3 in the first game.
Brianna Barth took the loss for Florida Tech as she was tagged for nine hits and five earned runs while striking out six in six innings of work.
Senior Chris Donovan tossed four shutout innings in starting game two for PBA while fellow senior Lauren Bubeck provided the team a lift with two scoreless frames of her own in relief. Pippin returned to the circle in the seventh after her team scratched out two runs in the bottom half of the sixth as they held on for the 2-0 win.
Things remained scoreless through five and a half innings as Florida Tech’s Taylor Smith (0-1) matched PBA’s pitchers with no runs allowed.
Donovan scattered five hits through four innings with her only serious trouble coming in the fourth when she escaped a first-and-third with only one out jam as she retired the final two batters of the inning on groundouts.
Bubeck picked up where Donovan left off as she silenced the FIT bats for two innings with no hits allowed while adding in a strikeout.
Palm Beach Atlantic finally broke through in the bottom of the sixth inning as senior Kimberly Traxler led off being hit by a pitch before stealing second and then scoring on an Anderson single. Anderson added an insurance run when she sped home after a wild pitch.
Pippin came on for the save in the seventh and preserved the shutout with a scoreless frame. Bubeck tallied the victory in relief.
Smith turned out to be the tough-luck loser as she allowed both runs while offering up five hits and no walks over six innings of work.
Anderson collected two of PBA’s five hits in the second game as she concluded the double-header 5-of-7 with three runs driven in, two runs scored, and one stolen base.
PBA will return to action this weekend when they will travel to Saint Leo University for a neutral site double-header on Saturday, February 4th versus St. Thomas University at 12 pm followed by a Sunday matchup at 12 pm versus Saint Leo.