BUFFALO, NY – The University at Buffalo softball team (16-29, 7-14 MAC) kept their playoff hopes alive on Friday afternoon at a windy Nan Harvey Field as they collected the hard-fought 7-3 victory over the Miami (OH) RedHawks. With the win, Buffalo will now need a pair of wins tomorrow afternoon against Miami and a pair of losses by Bowling Green against Ohio in order to earn the #8 seed in the MAC Tournament.
Miami opened up the scoring in the top of the first inning as an inning opening walk turned into a run as Johniann Wahl delivered a RBI double to left field.
The Bulls tried to respond with the tying run in the bottom of the first inning with two outs as Jenelle Martinez singled to center and Danielle Lallos earned a walk to give UB two runners on. Catrell Robertson then stepped in but couldn't deliver the run as the inning ended with UB trailing 1-0.
After the RedHawks scored a run in the top of the second to take the 2-0 lead, the Buffalo offense was able to gain the lead in the bottom half of the inning. Ufuoma Ogagan started the rally as she struckout but was able to advance to first after an error by the catcher on the throw down to first base. Alyssa Cuevas then earned a walk and Leandra Jew singled to first base. With the bases loaded and two outs, Anna Aguon collected an infield single to plate Ogagan and Martinez delivered a two-RBI single to center field to give the Bulls the 3-2 lead through two innings.
Buffalo extended their lead to 5-2 in the bottom of the third inning as Catrell Robertson earned a walk and Cuevas connected on her third home run of the season, a two-run shot to right center field.
After another scoreless inning in the circle by Power, the Buffalo lineup produced another two runs in the bottom of the fourth inning as Martinez blasted a two-run home run to deep left center field to give UB the 7-2 lead. The homer for Martinez was her team-best sixth of the season.
The RedHawks broke through with a run in the top of the sixth to make it 7-3 in favor of the Bulls as Kat Lee ledoff the inning with a solo home run to dead center field.
Power closed out the game for the Bulls in the bottom of the seventh to keep UB alive in their search for the final spot in the upcoming MAC Tournament.
Martinez led the Bulls offensively as she went 3-for-4 with a home run and four RBI. The sophomore now ranks fourth in UB history for RBI in a season as she has notched a career-high 36 RBI. Cuevas also had a strong game for UB as she notched her third home run of the season and recorded two RBI in the win. Aguon and Lallos each notched two hits in the win for UB as the lineup produced 13 hits in their 16th win of the season.
Power had a dominant day in the circle for the Bulls as she finished off her 13th win of the season going 7.0 innings and allowing just six hits and three runs while striking out six RedHawks.
The Bulls will wrap up their 2018 regular season on Saturday afternoon as they take on the RedHawks in a doubleheader starting at 1:00 pm at Nan Harvey Field. The Bulls will need a pair of wins and a pair of losses by Bowling Green to Ohio in order to qualify for the MAC Tournament as the #8 seed.