Feb. 9, 2014
WIU 3, UIC 1
ROSEMONT, Ill. - The UIC softball team (1-4) tried to rally back in the bottom of the seventh, but it did not prove to be enough as it fell 3-1 to Western Illinois on the final day of the Total Control Sports Invitational at the Dome. Junior Paige Peterson was the top performer for the Flames, making three diving catches in right field and recording a triple.
"We were really pleased with Bridget (Boyle) coming in and giving us a really solid game, and we needed that," head coach Michelle Venturella said. "Our defense was very solid and Paige (Peterson) was awesome in the outfield, and she was a big difference in why the game stayed close. Offensively, we need to make adjustments sooner and come up with timely hitting."
Western Illinois made it tough on UIC from the start of the game. In the first inning, the Leathernecks produced four hits and ultimately scored one run after Sammy Marshall singled to center, stole second, advanced to third on an error and scored off a double to left field.
The Flames then picked up their defense in the second and third, causing the Leathernecks to go three-up, three-down in both innings before WIU scored again in the top of the fourth on a throwing error and in the top of the seventh on a double to drive in a run.
UIC left a runner on in four straight innings, with senior Jacki Fletcher and junior Erica Hampton registering hits in the fourth and fifth, respectively. The Flames were unable to score until the bottom of the seventh, when Peterson stepped to the plate and belted a triple to right center. Peterson then went on to score off a sacrifice fly by Hampton, which would serve as UIC's lone run of the game.
With her first start of the season, sophomore Bridget Boyle had a strong performance on the mound for the Flames. While going all seven innings, Boyle struck out two batters and walked just one.
The Flames will try to turn it around as they prepare for the UCF/Holiday Inn Classic in Orlando, Fla. The three-day tournament gets underway on Friday, with UIC taking on Florida A&M at 10 a.m. CT and Delaware at 2:30 p.m.