Softball (1-3) opened its season at the Jax State Season Opener in Jacksonville, Alabama this weekend, facing Army West Point (2-2) and Jacksonville State (3-1).
UB started the series Friday with a 2-5 loss to Army. The Bulls fell behind early with a hitless first three innings. The Black Knights found their lead quickly, going up 3-0 after the third inning. Freshman infielder Abbey Nagel got UB’s first run of the game with a fourth inning home run. She also helped UB score its second run of the game when she drove home junior outfielder Sarah Kelly.
In Friday’s second game, UB lost to JSU, 9-0. JSU hit two two-run homers in the first inning, putting them up 4-0. The Bulls had only two hits in the game — from senior pitcher Alexis Lucyshyn and Kelly — in the second inning. The two were the only Bulls to get on base in the game.
The Bulls faced Army again on Saturday morning, falling 9-11. UB gained a lead in the third inning after junior pitcher Julia Tarantino drove in junior infielder Maddie Fernimen and Lucyshyn. The lead lasted until the seventh inning, and by the eighth inning, the Bulls lost their momentum, letting in six runs. UB could only come up with four runs in the bottom of the eighth, resulting in another loss.
UB ended the series on a high note, beating JSU 7-5 on Sunday to gain the team’s first win of the season. The Gamecocks took a 2-1 the lead in the second inning, but the Bulls managed to retake the lead in the third inning after Nagel scored on a ball freshman outfielder Mia Mitchell hit to center field. The Bulls went up 3-2 and didn’t let in another JSU run for the remainder of the game. Senior infielder Brianna Castro contributed three runs, while Lucyshyn helped secure the win by only allowing four hits and striking out four batters.
UB returns to action on Thursday and Friday for the UTEP Invitational in El Paso, Texas. The Bulls will face Texas Tech (3-2), UTEP (3-2), Santa Clara (0-4) and New Mexico (2-3).
Amy Maslin is a sports editor and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org