UCF Softball Falls to Texas Tech in Season Opener at Kajikawa Classic


Feb. 6, 2009

Box Score

ORLANDO, Fla. (UCFAthletics.com) - Despite getting two hits each from Abby McClain (Waterloo, Iowa), Morgan Bullard (Columbia, S.C.) and Tiffany Lane (Moreno Valley, Calif.), the UCF softball team faltered in its season-opener at the Kajikawa Classic against Big-12-foe Texas Tech, 12-4, at the Tempe Sports Complex Friday afternoon. The Knights must shake the loss quickly, as they face defending national champion Arizona State tonight at 7:30 p.m. ET on the Sun Devils' home field.

McClain and Bullard both posted a double, a single, a RBI and scored a run in the contest versus the Red Raiders, while Lane contributed a pair of singles, a stolen base and a run scored.

Breanne Javier (Castaic, Calif.) had a hit and a sacrifice fly, while freshman Vanessa Perez (San Diego, Calif.) added a single, scored a run and posted a RBI.

On the mound, Kristina DeMello (Mead, Wash.) took the loss for the Black and Gold, allowing six earned runs on nine hits, while striking out four batters in 4.1 innings of work. Diana Rojas (Miami, Fla.) also saw time on the mound for UCF in relief, throwing 2.2 innings.

The Red Raiders were the first to put runs on the board in the contest. A lead-off walk and three singles put the visiting team up by two after one and one-half innings, but UCF cut the Texas Tech lead in half in the bottom of the frame. McClain opened the inning with a double to right centerfield, moved to third with a ball passed the catcher and scored on a Perez grounder to second base.

Texas Tech answered right back in the next frame with two additional runs off a home run by Holley Gentsch. But, again, the Knights cut the Red Raiders' lead to one with two runs in the third inning thanks to back-to-back singles from Bullard and Lane. Bullard led off the inning with a perfectly executed bunt down the third base line, stole second base and scored on Lane's single. Javier then scored Lane with a deep sacrifice fly to left field. The Red Raiders threatened to score two more runs in the top of the fourth inning, but Perez robbed Alex Watkins of a home run with a spectacular snag over the fence with a runner on first base.

Despite having momentum on their side heading into the bottom of the inning, the Knights could not bring McClain around to score after the sophomore led off the inning with a single up the middle. Texas Tech took advantage of the opportunity, plating six runs in the top of the fifth and two more in the seventh.

UCF started to put together a rally in its final at-bat, with Perez and Mary Helen Tyler (Marianna, Fla.) lacing singles and Bullard posting a double for its fourth run of the contest. But, time ran out for the Knights before they could make up their deficit.

UCF will face the Sun Devils later today at 7:30 p.m. with Saturday's slate matching the Knights against Oklahoma State at 3:30 p.m. ET and Western Michigan at 6 p.m. ET. The Black and Gold's tournament finale will pit the Knights against No. 11 Stanford at 1 p.m. on Sunday.

Season tickets are on sale now for the 2009 softball season, which features 34 home games at the UCF Softball Complex. For the latest news on the Knights, log on to www.UCFAthletics.com - the official site for UCF varsity sports. The site, which also contains ticket and Golden Knights Club donor information, is also the home of UCF's new online apparel store. Also visit www.UCFPhotos.com, the exclusive fan source for UCF action sports pictures.