MADEIRA BEACH, FL – The University at Buffalo softball team (7-10, 0-0 MAC) wasn't able to extend their winning streak on Sunday afternoon as they dropped a pair of close games on the final day of the EMU Madeira Beach Invitational. The Bulls opened the day with a 5-2 loss against Northern Kentucky before Seton Hall snuck by the Bulls, 2-0.
In the first game of the day, the Norse were able to get on the board in the opening inning as they notched a leadoff single, a sacrifice bunt and another single to plate the runner from second base.
After UB stranded Danielle Lallos on base after a single in the second inning, the Norse were able to make the score 2-0 in the top of the third after a Buffalo error gave NKU a runner on base who came around to score on a sacrifice fly.
After a scoreless fourth inning, Northern Kentucky took the dominant 5-0 lead as they plated three runs in the fifth inning. The Norse were able to string together four singles to plate the three runs in the inning.
Buffalo was able to get on the board in the bottom of the fifth inning as Alyssa Cuevas opened the inning with a single. Cuevas moved over to third after a pair of groundouts before Anna Aguon delivered a RBI infield single to shortstop to cut the NKU lead to 5-1.
Brieanna Baker relieved Lace Smith in the circle and produced a pair of scoreless innings to send the game to the bottom of the seventh with UB trailing 5-1. After Nicolette Jacobs hit a flyout to open the inning, Cuevas connected on her first home run of the season to center field to cut the NKU lead to three, 5-2. The next two UB batters were unable to get on base and the Bulls fell, 5-2.
Baker was strong in relief, going 3.0 innings and allowing just two hits, no runs and striking out a pair of batters.
Cuevas was the Bulls best hitter as she went 2-for-3 with a home run, RBI and two runs scored while Aguon notched her team-leading 14th RBI of the season in the loss.
In the second game of the day, the Buffalo offense just couldn't get on track as they were shutout for the first time this season by Seton Hall, 2-0.
The Pirates got on the board in the top of the first inning as they opened the game with back-to-back doubles to take the 1-0 lead.
Aguon gave UB their first hit of the game in the bottom of the fourth inning as she connected on her third double of the season but the next two batters couldn't produce the run.
Starting pitcher Ally Power really settled in for the Bulls after the early struggles as she notched six straight outs in the fifth and sixth innings to give UB a chance to tie the game. The Bulls put the first batter on base in the bottom of the sixth but again couldn't score the tying run.
The Pirates produced an insurance run in the top of the seventh as they earned a leadoff single and a sacrifice bunt before Baylee Allender singled to left field to score the runner from second and give Seton Hall the 2-0 lead.
The Bulls tried to put together a two-out rally in the bottom of the seventh inning as Lallos was able to single to right field and Jessica Goldyn singled up the middle to bring the go-ahead run to the plate. Alissa Karjel then stepped in but collected the final out of the game with a deep fly ball to center field.
Power went the distance in the circle as she scattered seven hits while allowing two runs and striking out five batters in the loss. She now has a 5-6 record this season.
The UB offense was stagnant in the second game of the afternoon as they collected just four hits. Aguon, Lallos, Golden and Ufuoma Ogagan each notched one hit in the loss.
Buffalo will return to the diamond on Friday, March 16 as they head down to Clearwater, FL for the USF Tournament. UB will take on Florida A&M at 4:15 pm and North Florida at 6:30 pm.