Softball Rallies For 6-4 Win Over Cleveland State In Doubleheader Finale|
April 30, 2005
Chicago, Ill. -Back-to-back solo home runs by junior Joyce Cathey and senior Cameron Astiazaran in the bottom of the sixth inning proved to be the difference as the UIC softball team salvaged a split in its doubleheader with Cleveland State on Saturday afternoon with a 6-4 triumph at Flames Field.
UIC trailed 4-0 after three innings, but rallied for four runs in the fifth and two more in the sixth to move to 35-22 on the year and remain in sole possession of first place in the Horizon League with a 11-3 mark.
The Vikings, who won the opener by a 10-6 margin, are now 16-23 overall and 5-5 in league action.
With the score tied 4-4 and one out in the bottom of the sixth inning, Cathey homered to straight-away centerfield off reliever Grace Luginbuhl to give the Flames the lead. It was her career-best 10th homer of the season.
Astiazaran, who had homered in her first at bat in game one and was then walked six straight times intentionally, made the most of her second opportunity to swing the bat with a solo shot to center. It was her Horizon League-best 14th dinger of the year.
Freshman pitcher Mercedes Lovato would retire the Vikings in order in the seventh to pick up her 16th win in the circle. She allowed four runs, with just one being earned, on the day in a complete-game effort.
Game one starter Luginbuhl was tagged with the loss in a relief stint, She surrendered three runs on six hits in 1 1/3 innings to fall to 11-12 this season.
Cleveland State owned an early lead after putting up two runs in the first and third innings.
In the top of the first inning, catcher Jackie Cornelius continued her assault on UIC pitching with a two-run triple off the top of the right field wall. She then stroked her second RBI triple of game in the top of the third inning as part of a two-run rally.
The Flames evened the score with four runs in the bottom of the fifth. Cathey, senior Sara Hernandez and junior Nicole Shepard all had run-scoring hits in the rally.
Cathey and Astiazaran then put UIC in the lead in the sixth with back-to-back home runs.
The rubber game of the series with be on Sunday at 11:00 a.m. at Flames Field.