March 2, 2018

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Game 1:
Boxscore           PDF

Game 2: Boxscore           PDF

OXFORD, Miss. – The University of Tennessee at Martin softball team struggled on the opening day of the Ole Miss Classic on Friday afternoon, falling to Chattanooga (7-6) and No. 17 Ole Miss (10-2) in five innings.

The Skyhawks (6-10) posted a .315 batting average on the day while scoring eight runs, but it would not be enough as the squad allowed 14 earned runs on the afternoon. Senior catcher Aeron Smith and second baseman Savannah Dodson both tallied four hits on the day while Smith and Veronica Pezzoni tallied two RBIs each on the day. Alli Fulcher, Jodie Duncan and Alexis Rogers also drove in one run each.

On the pitching side, Hannah Ridolfi (3-4, 2.40 ERA) and Sara Hooten (0-2, 5.92 ERA) were both credited with losses. Ridolfi allowed seven earned runs in six innings against Chattanooga while Hooten and sophomore Samantha Scott allowed seven earned runs in 4.2 innings of work against No. 17 Ole Miss.

Game One: Chattanooga 7, UT Martin 6

Chattanooga broke through in a huge way in the bottom of the second inning, scoring all seven of the team’s runs in the inning. The Mocs got their first RBIs of the contest on a trio of singles by Alyssa Coppinger, Kacie Lynch and Hayleigh Weissenbach. The final damage would come later in the inning as Ashley Conner bashed a grand slam to make it a 7-0 advantage.

UT Martin attempted to rally in the top of the third. With the bases loaded, Fulcher would draw a walk to bring the Skyhawks first run home to score. With the bases still full, Pezzoni doubled through the left side to plate Madelyn Dycus and Dodson on the play. The squad then added two more runs as Smith doubled to left center to trim the margin to two runs.

The Skyhawks added another run in the top of the fourth inning as Lauren Myers walked to leadoff the inning before moving into scoring position on a double by Dodson to put runners on second and third with no outs. Needing a big hit, Duncan pulled a single through the right side to make it a 7-6 contest.

UT Martin would have one last shot to tie the game in the top of the seventh inning. Smith and Myers would both tally base hits in the inning, but the rally would come up short as the squad stranded the pair on base, resulting a 7-6 loss.

Game Two: No. 17 Ole Miss 10, UT Martin 2

Squaring off against the team’s first ranked opponent of the season, No. 17 Ole Miss wasted little time getting on the board, scoring in the bottom of the first. Two errors led a pair of baserunners which the Rebels turned into a pair of unearned runs on back-to-back singles by Autumn Gillespie and Abbey Latham.

The Rebels added another pair in the second inning as Amanda Roth hit a two-run home run to left field to take a 4-0 advantage.

UT Martin got on the board in the top of the third as Dodson and Fulcher reached base with consecutive singles to start the inning. Gracyn McBride would drop a sacrifice bunt which the catcher would muff, scoring Dodson on the play.

Ole Miss stayed aggressive after giving up the run with two runs in the third and another in the fourth to take a 7-3 advantage. The third would see a run come home on a throwing error while Alex Schneider tallied a sacrifice fly to push the advantage out an additional two runs. Meanwhile in the fourth, Ally Mena picked up a RBI on a fielder’s choice.

The Skyhawks would tally their final run of the contest in the top of the fifth. Aalia Bivens singled through the left side with two outs to extend the inning. The base knock would be followed by a RBI double to right center by Rogers to make it a 7-2 contest.

Ole Miss would put the game out of reach in the bottom of the fifth with three additional runs to enact the mercy rule. Roth would tally her second two-run home run of the game to left field to start the frame before Finney put the game away with a sacrifice fly to score the game-ending run.

UT Martin will return to action against Southern Miss on Saturday, March 3. First pitch is scheduled for 10 a.m.

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