EARLY MISCUES TOO MUCH TO OVERCOME IN NCAA REGIONAL
Alma, MI - It was the first appearance for the Geneva College softball team at the NCAA Division III regional tournament. For the first two innings on Thursday, it became quite evident that the Golden Tornadoes were not quite accustomed to their unfamiliar surroundings. Early miscues proved to be costly in a 6-5 loss to top seeded Trine University; IN. Geneva came into the Alma, MI regional as the eighth seed and drew top seeded Trine in the first game of the tournament. The loss dropped Geneva′s overall record to 30-18 and forced it into Friday′s loser bracket and a 10 am meeting against either John Carroll or Chicago University in an elimination game.
Geneva opened its first appearance on a positive note with a tally in the top of the first. Ashley Davis lashed a single to center field scoring Martha Adams with the game′s first run. In the bottom of the inning, Trine answered with two runs. After a lead-off walk, Geneva could not handle a bunt and the Thunder were set up for a big inning. The top seed took advantage with a pair of runs to take the lead. Trine extended its lead with three more runs in the second to open up a 5-1 lead. Christina Fuqua knocked in a run for Geneva in the third to cut the lead but Trine quickly answered with another to maintain its four-run cushion.
Fuqua came up with a sacrifice fly in the fifth to cut the lead to 6-3 and the stage for what almost turned out to be an incredible comeback. Geneva posted two runs in the seventh inning on an Andrea Hinds ground out and another base hit from Ashley Davis. The Golden Tornadoes could not complete the comeback by leaving the tying run stranded on first base.
Julie DiLonardo went the distance and allowed four earned runs ten hits. DiLonardo managed just two strikeouts in the loss. Geneva′s offense was sparked by senior centerfield Martha Adams with a perfect 3-3 day with four runs scored. Davis also had two of Geneva′s eight hits in the loss.
"It was an amazing experience for our young ladies to play in such a great game," said head coach Van Zanic. "We simply didn′t answer the bell in the first two innings on defense and it cost us against a very good team. I was proud of the way we battled offensively but you can′t make costly mistakes and expect to win on the national level."
Geneva will play a loser′s bracket game on Friday morning at 10 am against the loser of John Carroll and Chicago University.
Geneva College is a comprehensive Christian college of the arts, sciences and professional studies. Founded in the tradition of the Reformed Christian faith, Geneva prepares students to serve Christ in all areas of society: work, family and the church. Geneva College′s philosophy of education is based on the Foundational Concepts of Christian Higher Education.