February 25, 2018

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The University of Tennessee at Martin softball team took an early lead but could not counter two runs in the top of the seventh inning, ultimately falling to IUPUI in the Frost Classic finale on Sunday morning.

The Skyhawks (6-8) led for the majority of the contest, taking a lead in the bottom of the second inning while holding the Jaguars scoreless for six innings of play before two unearned runs came home to score in the top of the seventh proved to be the team’s demise.

UT Martin was limited to three hits on the day. Junior Alli Fulcher, senior Aeron Smith and freshman Paige Clark each tallied base hits. It was Clark’s single in the bottom of the second which resulted in the Skyhawks lone run of the day and the first of her young career.

Sophomore Hannah Ridolfi (3-3, 1.49 ERA) saw her season’s earned run average drop once again but was charged with the loss in the contest. Ridolfi allowed six hits but zero earned runs in seven innings of work.

UT Martin got on the board in the bottom of the second inning. Fulcher would mark the team’s first base runner of the day after reaching base on a fielding error in the outfield. Positioned at second base, Fulcher would travel the final 120 feet home as Clark stroked a single up the middle for her first collegiate RBI.

The Skyhawks would get out of jams in both the top of the third and sixth innings without any damage, stranding two runners on base in both frames. The team’s luck would run out however in the top of the seventh. Two quick outs would be followed by an outfield error which led to new life. With a runner on first, a double and a corresponding walk would load the bases with two outs. Needing a big hit, the Jaguars’ Haley Ginger would provide just that, notching a single to right to score a pair and take a 2-1 advantage.

Needing a rally of their own, the Skyhawks would load the bases themselves following a single by Fulcher and a pair of walks to Smith and Aalia Bivens. The squad would not find the clutch at-bat however as the trio would be stranded on the bags as the game ended on a strikeout.

UT Martin will return to action on Friday, March 2 through Sunday, March 4 with an appearance in the Ole Miss Classic.

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