UB Softball Could Use a Break After a Winless One
The UB softball team took to the road for the spring break, playing a demanding eight-game schedule involving three schools and three doubleheaders. The squad traveled to the University of Ohio, Canisius College and Marshall University to try and bring their season back on track.
Unfortunately for the Bulls, UB went winless over the break, losing two key conference series to bring their record to 0-6 in the MAC, 1-12 overall. Buffalo has now lost 10 straight games.
The Bulls opened up MAC play on March 23-24, when they faced the Ohio Bobcats in a three-game series. UB dropped all three games, losing 8-0, 11-3 and 3-0.
Pitcher Valerie Wood of Ohio threw a near flawless game, allowing just two hits total, one from sophomore Alison Round and the other from Stacey Evans. Bulls pitcher Heather Robbins took the loss, as the Bobcats got most of their offense from a two-run home run in the first inning, and a three-run home run in the third.
"The biggest issue is not being able to play games prior to the season," said UB Head Coach Marie Curran. "We had a lot of lax time, and hadn't seen live pitching, and anyone who knows Division-I knows how hard the pitching is."
UB came out swinging and took an early lead in the second game Saturday on a three-run home run by outfielder Breanne Nasti in the first inning.
The Bobcats came roaring back, however, with a run in the second, three runs in the third inning and a monstrous seven runs in the final inning of play.
UB had no luck in the final game of the series either, as they lost 3-0 on the strength of two first-inning solo home runs off Bulls pitcher Jessica Kensy. Ohio improved their record to 9-11 overall (3-0 MAC).
The Bulls came back from Ohio to Buffalo to play another road game at local rival Canisius March 25. UB was trounced 9-0, managing only one hit by Nasti in the fourth inning. The win put Canisius' record at 9-6.
The Bulls had to go back out on the road for their three-game series against the Marshall Thundering Herd last weekend due to poor weather conditions in Buffalo.
Buffalo was swept for the second straight time by a MAC opponent, losing their games 4-3, 7-1, and 7-2.
In the first game, Buffalo once again took the momentum early, leading 3-0 after the first two innings of play. But it proved not to be enough, as Marshall came ... thundering back with four runs in the fifth inning to snatch the game out of Buffalo's hands.
Game two was a completely different story as the Thundering Herd dominated from the outset, routing the Bulls 7-1. Buffalo once again came out sluggish on offense, only putting up a single run in the game on a double by Nasti to score Ross.
Despite losing again, the Bulls are seeing some good production from their outfielder Nasti, who had a home run, and scored on a wild pitch in Saturday's 7-2 loss.
"She's got her swing back, she's got her eye back, she's definitely stepping up," said Curran.
The Herd got all of their seven runs on a disastrous third inning for Robbins, who gave up six singles to score three runs, and hit two batters with the bases loaded.
"At this point we need to focus on pitching," said Curran when asked about the team's outlook for the rest of the season. "We need our pitchers to give up less earned runs, we have defense behind them. ... I think they're ready to come out of their shell."
The Bulls will try to turn things around Saturday, when they will host Western Michigan in a doubleheader at 1p.m. The three-game series will conclude Sunday, again a 1 p.m. start.