March 1, 2013
ORLANDO – The Georgia Tech softball team (10-9) lost its first two games of the Citrus Classic at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Friday, as the Yellow Jackets fell in a one-run nine-inning thriller to Fordham, 11-10, before dropping a 6-1 contest to No. 14 Michigan.
Tech battled the Rams (5-6) through nine innings, making it the second straight nine-inning game for the Yellow Jackets.
Game 1 – Fordham 11, Georgia Tech 10 (9)
The first game of the day was a rollercoaster as the lead changed five times and the score was knotted on three occasions.
The Jackets got on the board first with four runs in the second inning. With one out, Maddie Lionberger and Caitlyn Coffey, who both reached base on singles, scored on an error by the Rams’ third baseman on a ball off the bat of Hayley Downs. An RBI-single from Alysha Rudnik scored Downs and Hope Rush’s double to left center plated Rudnik to give the Jackets a 4-0 lead.
Tech relinquished that lead in the next frame, allowing six runs on four hits and made two costly errors, but got it right back in the bottom of the inning with two runs thanks to a two-RBI double from Ashley Thomas.
The Jackets had an 8-6 lead, before the Rams tied the score once again with two runs in the fifth frame.
Both teams scored the runner during the international tie-breaker and took a 9-9 game into the ninth inning.
A two-run bomb from Gabby Luety put the game away for the Rams, and the Jackets were unable to score more than one run in the bottom of the ninth.
Game 2 – Michigan 6, Georgia Tech 1
The Wolverines (11-3) wasted no time and put up four runs on five hits in the first inning off Georgia Tech starter Rush (6-6).
In the bottom of the same frame, the Jackets pushed one run across the plate. Ashley Thomas ran out an infield single and moved to second on a base-hit by Katie Johnsky. With two outs, Morgan Taylor stepped to the plate and ripped a line drive through the left side to score Ashley Thomas.
Freshman Ashley Clifton replaced Rush in the second inning and held No. 14 Michigan to two runs on five hits over the next 5.0 innings.
Sara Driesenga (10-2) pitched her eighth complete game for Michigan and fanned 15 batters. In a span of three innings, Driesenga struck out seven consecutive batters and eight total hitters.
The Jackets are back in action Saturday at 12:15 p.m. against No.15/16 Louisville. The game will be broadcast on ESPN3 with Kevin Corke on the call and two-time All-American pitcher Amanda Scarborough as the analyst.