Knights Fall to Tulsa, 5-1

ORLANDO – The Knights couldn't get it done in the series opener against Tulsa on Thursday as UCF fell 5-1 for its first conference loss of the year, moving the Knights to 24-7, 4-1.
"I think we kind of deviated from our plan once we got runners in scoring position. We maybe got a little anxious, but I think if we had just stayed within ourselves and taken it one at-bat at a time, we would have been in a better situation," said head coach Cindy Ball-Malone. "At the same time, you have to tip your cap to [Tulsa starting pitcher Chenise Delce]. We haven't been shutout this year and she was on her way to doing that."
It was a pitcher's duel until late as Delce and UCF's Alea White were called on to start for their respective teams. White was solid for the Knights, allowing just two runs (none earned) through her first five innings to keep the black and gold in the ballgame. Unfortunately, after not getting any run support, White was pulled in the sixth after allowing a third run to score and loading the bases. She finished the night with 5.1 innings pitched and five runs allowed (three earned) to move to 13-2. Breanna Vasquez came in relief, throwing 0.2 innings and allowing no earned runs.
Meanwhile, despite threating with runners in scoring position several times, the UCF offense could not get anything going for much of the game as Delce was phenomenal, throwing six scoreless innings and holding the Knights to just three hits. She gave way to Kassidy Scott in the seventh, who allowed one run but closed the door on an otherwise uneventful evening for UCF.
UCF had a runner reach scoring position in the game's first four innings and in six out of seven innings total, but they were unable to execute on most of those opportunities, falling 5-1 to the Hurricane.
"We just have to leave this game as this game. We'll wear it for about thirty minutes but then we have to move on. We still have an opportunity to win the series. Anyone that has watched UCF Softball this year knows that wasn't us. We just can't get too caught up in the noise of that game. We have to leave it there."
The Knights will play the Hurricane in a doubleheader on Friday with games at 4:00 p.m. and 6:00 p.m. before wrapping things up with a noon first pitch on Saturday.

Key Moments

  • Tulsa loaded the bases in the third and right fielder Sarah Briers grounded out, but not before driving in a pair to give Tulsa an early 2-0 lead.
  • A Tulsa RBI single in the sixth would extend their lead to 3-0.
  • The next batter would double to give the Hurricane the 5-0 lead late.
  • With two away in the seventh, UCF outfielder Kennedy Searcy doubled and came around to score on a Georgia Blair single, cutting the Knights' deficit to 5-1

Stay tuned to UCF Softball on Facebook (/UCFSoftball), Twitter (@UCF_Softball), and Instagram (@UCF.Softball) for the latest on the UCF softball team.
Never miss any UCF Knights news from your favorite team by downloading the free UCF Knights app right to your iOS or Android phone! The app provides personalized information for men's and women's teams, scores, schedules, loyalty programs, and even breaking news. Download the app here.