Softball Suffers 5-2 Setback to Swarthmore; Edged by Wisconsin Lutheran 7-5

Softball Suffers 5-2 Setback to Swarthmore; Edged by Wisconsin Lutheran 7-5

NAPLES, Fla.- The Eastern Nazarene College softball team closed out play at the Gene Cusic Classic in Naples, Florida with a 5-2 loss to Swarthmore and a 7-5 loss to Wisconsin Lutheran Thursday afternoon.

The Lions return to Quincy, Massachusetts with a 3-7 overall record. The Garnet improves to 5-2 on the year while the Warriors move to 6-2.

Lauren Clements (Garrison, Texas) paced the squad with four hits on the day, including the team's first homer of the spring. She also added a pair of RBIs and a run on the afternoon.

Emily Gomez (Floral Park, N.Y.) finished with four RBIs, a pair of base knocks and a run scored. Kaitlyn Jimenez (Meriden, Conn.) notched two hits, two runs scored and an RBI while Payton Fry (Chandler, Ariz.) landed three hits.

In game one on the day, Swarthmore struck for five runs in the top of the second inning. Emily Bowman singled through the right side of the infield to plate Elizabeth Curcio from third. Marit Vike followed with a two run double to left to score Frankie Ponziani and Amanda Lopez before Bowman crossed the dish on an error.

Eastern Nazarene responded with a pair of runs in the home half of the frame to shrink the deficit to 5-2. With the bases full, Emily Gomez laced a single up the middle to drive in Meghan Stanley (Bedford, Mass.) and Tylan Onorato (Wiscassett, Maine).

Heidi Gomez (Floral Park, N.Y.) pitched her third straight complete game and struck out eight while allowing three earned runs.

In Eastern Nazarene's Florida finale, the Lions dropped a narrow 7-5 decision to Wisconsin Lutheran.

The Warriors pushed across one run in the top of the first inning as Kaitlyn Robison crossed the plate as Taylor Bjork grounded out.

Wisconsin Lutheran doubled its lead to 2-0 in the third inning as Rebecca Yniguez scooted home on a wild pitch.

Eastern Nazarene got on the board in the bottom of the third, cutting the gap to 2-1. Emily Gomez flared a single to right-center to drive in Jimenez from second to register her third RBI of the day.

The Warriors reclaimed a two-run edge with a score in the fourth frame, 3-1. A double-steal saw Libby Schellpfeffer crossed the dish as Megan Belongia swiped second base.

Wisconsin Lutheran chalked up two runs in the fifth to push its advantage to 5-1. Bjork landed a single in right to plate Robison and Payton Barker scored from second on a two-out double to right-center by Schellpfeffer.

The Lions clawed back to tie the game at 5-5 with a four-run inning in the home half of the fifth. Jimenez raked a single up the middle to drive in Onorato from third and later scored as Emily Gomez reached base on a fielder's choice. Clements followed by launching her first home run of the spring, a two-run shot over the fence in left.

The Warriors regained a two-run lead in the top of the seventh. Robison scored for the third time in the game on a triple to left-center by Cassie Arns. Arns dashed home as Bjork reached first on an error.

Lauren Weidler (Lansdale, Pa.) started in the pitcher's circle, tossing 4.2 innings and fanning four. Heidi Gomez worked the final 2.1 innings in a relief capacity, allowing just one hit and one earned run.

Looking ahead, Eastern Nazarene returns to the diamond March 23 as it host Curry in the first Commonwealth Coast Conference doubleheader of the spring.