MIAMI -- The Fairfield University softball team opened its annual spring trip to Florida with a doubleheader against Florida International University. The Panthers won the opener by a 10-2 score before picking up an 8-0 victory in the second game.
The first game's score does not show the entire picture of the game as Fairfield scored a pair of runs in the first inning and held the lead until the bottom of the fifth when FIU blew the game open with nine runs in that half of the inning. The game was called during that inning because of the eight-run rule.
Fairfield opened the game with Amanda Ulzheimer led off the game with an infield single to rhe right side. Alisha Marshall was hit by a pitch, putting runners on first and second without any outs. Tori Reed followed with a base hit that chased Ulzheimer home and put runners on second and third after the throw home. Lacey Olaff kept the rally going with a single down the left field run, sending home Marshall and giving the visitors a 2-0 lead.
Pitcher Destinee Pallotto did not yield a hit until the third inning, but it came after the Panthers managed to scratch a run which scored on a wild pitch on a third strike.FIU put together the game-ending rally in the fifth inning which included six hits and a grand slam.
In the second game, Fairfield had trouble mounting any offense against pitcher Shannon Saile, who allowed only one hit in her five innings of work. Reed was the one responsible for that hit, stroking a two-hit single in the fourth inning. She was Fairfield's only base runner in the game. FIU scored three runs in the second inning and tacked on five more runs in the fourth inning, accouting for the 8-0 final score.
The Stags continue their week-long run through the Sunshine State on Sunday, playing Illinois State at 2:45 pm and Florida Atlantic at 6 pm.