Friday Split

Feb. 27, 2015

UCF Athletics Social Media Directory

By Megan Herboth

ORLANDO, Fla. ( - The No. 15 UCF softball team split the opening day of the Wilson/DeMarini Invitational at the UCF Softball Complex on Friday.

UCF (13-3) topped Princeton, 3-2, in its first game of the weekend, but the Iowa Hawkeyes flipped the script to claim a 3-2 win over the Knights in the nightcap.

"I think all of this is a learning curve," UCF head coach Renee Luers-Gillispie said. "We have to understand that if our energy, our intensity isn't up for every single game, the teams that are playing us will have that intensity. We've got the target on our back and that's part of the learning curve that we have to have."

UCF-Princeton Box Score

Senior Mackenzie Audasearned her sixth win of the season, striking out five consecutive Princeton batters. She finished the game with 11 strikeouts and just three hits in six innings of work. Junior Shelby Turnier came on for an inning of relief, striking out the side to close the game.

With two outs, junior Jessica Ujvarisingled through the right side. Junior Kalyn Cenalreached on an error and junior Samantha McCloskeydrew a walk to load the bases for senior Farrah Sullivan. Sullivan delivered with single up the middle, scoring a pair of runs to give the Knights a 2-0 lead early.

Princeton cut the lead to one in the top of the second, after a Tiger walk and stolen base put the runner on second. A double from Skye Jerpback scored Haley Hineman, putting Princeton on the scoreboard.

Freshman Courtney Rottonled off for the Knights in the bottom of the second, knocking a double out to right center. The Clermont, Fla., native's three collegiate hits have been a double, triple and home run.

Audas and the UCF defense kept the Tigers off the board until the top of the sixth when the Tigers used an RBI single from Cara Worden to tie the game at 2-2. The Knights used a double play and a ground out to end the inning with two runners still on base.

McCloskey drew her ninth walk of the season to open the bottom of the inning. A Sullivan single put runners on first and second, and sophomore Brittany Solis advanced the pair with a sacrifice bunt. Rotton drew a walk to load the bases and senior pinch runner Maddy Schroederscored the go-ahead run on an RBI single from sophomore Linnea Goodman. Turnier closed the game with three straight strikeouts to give the Knights a 3-2 win.

UCF-Iowa Box Score

Iowa jumped out on UCF in the Friday nightcap. The Hawkeyes used a hit by pitch and a double to right center to take the early 1-0 lead over the Knights.

The Black and Gold bounced back to take a 2-1 lead in the bottom of the second. Sullivan walked and advanced to second on a wild pitch. A single from sophomore Brittany Solisled to a wild sequence that saw Sullivan score and Solis move all the way to third base. A sacrifice fly from Rotton sent Solis home, pushing the UCF lead to 2-1.

The Knights matched the Hawkeyes hit-for-hit and Shelby Turnier battled to keep the visitors off the scoreboard, but a run in the top of the fifth knotted the score at 2-2, and a fielder's choice bunt pushed Iowa in front, 3-2. UCF scattered hits in each inning, but stranded runners each time. Senior Kahley Novak led off with a single to the shortstop in the top of the seventh, speeding down the line to put the tying run on for the Knights. She advanced all the way to third, but was left on as the game ended.

Turnier tossed a complete game effort, striking out five batters, while allowing six hits and a pair of earned runs.

UCF Softball, which is presented by City Kia of Greater Orlando, closes out its weekend with a pair of games at the Wilson/DeMarini Invitational on Saturday. The Knights host LIU Brooklyn at 2 p.m. and Florida A&M at 6:30 p.m.