March 17, 2009
ORLANDO, Fla. (UCFAthletics.com) - The UCF softball team staged a seventh-inning rally to send the game into extra innings, but it was not enough as the Knights fell to visiting FIU, 8-6, Tuesday night at the UCF Softball Complex.
For the third time in its last four games, the Black and Gold posted double-digits in hits, collecting 11 in the game, including four for extra bases, but left 10 runners stranded on base.
Tiffany Lane (Moreno Valley, Calif.) led the Knights with three hits, including a double, a run and a RBI, while Breanne Javier (Castaic, Calif.) and Tenisha Dixon (New Port Richey, Fla.) added two hits apiece.
Dixon hit her third triple of the season and recorded a RBI and a run scored in the loss, while fellow freshman Vanessa Perez (San Diego, Calif.) hit a double and knocked in a run. Lindsay Dean (Jacksonville, Fla.) rounded out the power-pack with a solo home run in the in the third inning and scored a game-high two runs.
Ashleigh Cole (Pace, Fla.) was tagged with the loss in the circle for the home team, giving up six runs, five earned, on 10 hits in five innings of relief. The junior also had three walks and two hit batters in the defeat, dropping her record to 10-5 on the year. Kristina DeMello (Mead, Wash.) got the start for UCF, allowing two runs on four hits in three innings of work.
The Golden Panthers got on the board in both the first and third innings, before Dean put the Knights on the board, and cut FIU's lead in half, with a solo home run to centerfield in the bottom of the third frame.
A pair of walks, a hit batsman and a single helped the visiting Panthers plate two more runs in the fourth to extend their lead to two runs, but the home team answered back in the bottom half of the inning with a run of its own. Lane reached on a lead-off double to centerfield and scored on a bunt single by Javier one batter later.
Dixon's triple in the fifth inning pulled the Knights within one run of FIU, scoring Dean from first base, before the Black and Gold loaded the bases in the bottom of the seventh with the game-winning run sitting at first base. Hillary Barrow (Miami, Fla.) stepped up to the plate and guided one run in on a fielder's choice, before Perez brought in the game-tying run with a grounder to the shortstop. But, a strikeout by FIU reliever, Jennifer Gniadek, left the score knotted at five runs apiece at the end of regulation.
The Golden Panthers got right to work in extra innings, plating three runs in the eighth to give the Knights some work to do in the bottom half of the inning. UCF answered with a single run in the frame and put the game-winning run in scoring position with two outs, but another strikeout by Gniadek halted UCF's chance at an extra-inning rally.
UCF concludes its seven-game homestand Thursday when it takes on Iowa at 5 p.m. at the UCF Softball Complex.
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.