UCCS Salvages Split at Hays

By Doug Fitzgerald published March 5, 2006

It turns out the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs softball team is mortal after all.

The Mountain Lions dropped their first game of the season, a 6-3 loss to the Fort Hays State Tigers in the opener of Sundayâ€TMs doubleheader at Hays, Kan. UCCS came back decisively in the second game with an 8-0 decision shortened to five innings because of the NCAAâ€TMs run rule.

The Mountain Lions are now 7-1 on the season, all of which were Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference games. Fort Hays State is now 3-10, 1-7 in RMAC play.

In Game 1, UCCS did just about everything it could to end its six-game winning streak. The Mountain Lions committed eight errors, the most in at least five years. The most errors UCCS had committed since 2001 was five, which occurred on March 5, 2005 against, ironically, Fort Hays State.

“They were all routine plays,” said UCCS coach Scott Peterson about Sundayâ€TMs errors. “Iâ€TMm just glad we got rid of it in the second game.”

Only two of the runs allowed by UCCS starter Amanda Ritchie (4-1) were earned. She allowed seven hits and walked none while striking out four,

“Amanda deserved to get the win,” said Peterson. “We let her down today.”

Offensively, the Mountain Lions were held to a season-low three hits by Fort Hays State starter Emily Rockefeller (1-2), none of which went for extra bases.

“Even with the errors, we had a chance to win,” said Peterson. “We just didnâ€TMt get the hits when we needed them.”

True enough. Despite its offensive struggles, UCCS left five runners stranded in scoring position. A timely hit ere or there and the Mountain Lions might still have pulled the opener out.

The nightcap, though, was quite another story. Brittni Carlson drilled an RBI single in the first inning to put UCCS up 1-0. The Mountain Lions added seven runs on eight hits in the second to take a commanding lead.

Angie Heronema (3-0) made the lead stand up. The freshman from Berthoud, Colo., allowed just one hit, a second-inning single, to post a five inning shutout. Heronemaâ€TMs repertoire of off-speed and breaking pitches provided an effective contrast to the flame-throwing Ritchie.

“Angie threw a great game,” said Peterson. “Itâ€TMs tough (on opponents) because thereâ€TMs a change of pace there.”

Carlson, Savannah Ledford and Rachel Hancock each ht three hits for the Mountain Lions. Carlson also had two RBIs to increase her RMAC-leading total to 24.

UCCS Players/Staff Featured

Brittni CarlsonBrittni Carlson32IFFr.
Brittni CarlsonBrittni Carlson321BSo.
Brittni CarlsonBrittni Carlson32OFJr.
Brittni CarlsonBrittni Carlson32OFSR.
Amanda RitchieAmanda Ritchie17PJr.
Amanda RitchieAmanda Ritchie17PJr.
Rachel HancockRachel Hancock42BSo.
Rachel HancockRachel Hancock42BSo.
Rachel HancockRachel Hancock42BJr.
Angie HeronemaAngie Heronema1P
Savannah LedfordSavannah Ledford24SS
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