Softball Eliminated At Horizon League Tournament By Loyola, 6-5|
May 9, 2003
Cleveland, Ohio - The UIC softball team watched a five-run lead evaporate in the final three innings on Friday evening, as Loyola eliminate the Flames from the 2003 Horizon League Tournament with a 6-5 victory at Viking Field.
The Flames finish the season with a record of 20-37.
Miscues in the field and on the base paths proved costly for UIC as they allowed five unearned runs in the game while also having a three-run homer wiped off the board when a Flame runner left first early.
UIC struck first versus Loyola, as a two-out throwing error by Rambler shortstop Keilah Williams allowed Cameron Astiazaran, who had led off the game with a walk, to score.
The Flames then added to their lead with four runs with two outs in the top of the second inning. Sophomore Sara Hernandez (2-for-3, 3 RBI) did most of the damage, roping a double with the bases loaded that scored all three runners. Freshman Nicole Shepard would make the score 4-0 later in the frame with an RBI infield single.
It looked as though Astiazaran had given UIC a commanding 8-0 lead in the top of the fifth, but her three-run homer was negated when Joyce Cathey was called out for leaving first early. Astiazaran would eventually ground out to short to end the inning.
Loyola would make the Flames pay for that mistake, tying the game in the bottom of the fifth with five unearned runs. After two UIC errors extended the inning, Alison Scanlin struck the biggest blow as she plated three with a two-out double off the centerfield wall on a 3-2 pitch.
After UIC stranded a runner in scoring position in the top of the sixth, Loyola senior Katie Blackmore came through in the clutch with a two-out RBI single up the middle off Flames reliever Brittany McIntyre to give the Ramblers a 6-5 lead.
Rambler starter Jenny Rice allowed a pair of hits in the top of the seventh to the Flames, but retired the next two batters to get out of the jam and earn the win. Rice is now 14-7 with the victory.
UIC starter Alison Aguilar was the tough-luck loser, despite allowing just one earned run in five innings of work. Aguilar finishes the year at 10-19.