CLEARWATER, FL – The University at Buffalo softball team scored a combined 16 runs in a pair of victories on Saturday at the USF – The Game Tournament. The Bulls began the day with a 5-0 win over Liberty and then hung on for an 11-10 victory over Florida Atlantic.
The Bulls used a dominating performance on the mound from junior Holly Johnson, who struck out eight batters in the victory. The Bulls got on the board in the bottom of the first as they loaded the bases with nobody out, but were able to score just once with the run coming on a bunt single from Andi Saucier, scoring Ashley Bertot.
UB scored two more in the second innings as it rallied with two outs, putting runners at second and third. Both runs would come home to score on a single to left field by Alyssa Ward. The Bulls remained up 3-0 through most of the contest until the bottom of the sixth, when they would add another two.
The Bulls pounded out 11 hits against the Flames, including two from Ward and Alexandra Bejarano. In all nine different players recorded a hit, including eight starters.
The UB offense wasn't done though as it recorded another 13 hits in the 11-10 win over Florida Atlantic, Buffalo's second victory over the Owls in the last week. Neither team scored in the first innings, but the Bulls then scored in three straight innings, including a five-run fourth.
In the second, Gleiser would come home to score on a fielder's choice and in the third Waldron would score on a double from Ward to give Buffalo a 2-0 lead. The fourth also began with Gleiser on base and she scored as Jessica Griffin doubled to center field. Buffalo scored another run as Lindsay Hampton pinch ran for Griffin and scored on a fielder's choice by Sammi Gallardo. Waldron would drive in a run with an infield single and the Bulls would load the bases with one out. Following an out at the plate, UB scored two more runs on a single up the middle from Ward, scoring Bertot and Waldron.
UB led 7-0 heading into the bottom of the fourth, but Florida Atlantic responded with a five-spot of its own to pull within 7-5. Following a scoreless fifth inning, Buffalo added another four runs in the sixth to go up 11-5. UB again loaded the bases with no outs and freshman Holly Luciano singled to right field, scoring Ward and Bejarano. Then with runners at second and third, Griffin hit a single to center field, scoring Gleiser and Luciano.
Florida Atlantic answered with three runs in the bottom of the sixth to pull within 11-8, heading into the seventh. The Bulls were retired in order and Florida Atlantic would take one more shot in the bottom of the seventh. With two outs, the Owls scored two runs to pull within 11-10 and then loaded bases, putting the winning run at second base. However, Johnson was able to make one more pitch, getting a fly out to left field to end the game.
Johnson also picked up the win in the second game for her fourth victory of the season. She struck out seven batters despite being charged with seven runs in the game. Tori Speckman and Kate Kraus also saw action in the circle.
Five different Bulls had two-hit games, including Ward, Gleiser, Griffin, Saucier and Waldron. Griffin had four runs batted in, while Ward drove three home. More impressive was UB's discipline from the plate as it struck out just once all game against Florida Atlantic.
UB wraps up play at the USF – The Game Tournament tomorrow morning as it faces Quinnipiac at 9:30 am.