KISSIMMEE, Fla. – The Defiance College softball team wrapped up their final day of the Sunkissed Games tournament with a split, knocking off Muhlenberg University 13-12 in game one before falling 10-8 to Muskingum University in game two.
Defiance pulled off the comeback victory in game one, rallying from a seven run deficit to claim the 13-12 victory
After just two frames of play, Muhlenberg held the 11-7 advantage, scoring four in the first inning and seven in the second. Defiance tallied one run in the first inning as Jordan Osborne crushed a leadoff double to left center to set up Mariah Huff for the RBI SAC fly.
The Yellow Jackets put on their rally caps to combat the 11-1 hole they found themselves in early, scoring six runs in the second, including a grand slam from Brooke Gostomsky. Michaela Bauer lit the fire with a solo homerun on a full count. Arianna Richards would follow, taking advantage of pitching errors to advance from second to home on a passed ball and a wild pitch. Haley Patty would follow suite, also capitalizing on mistakes to earn a spot on third base. Defiance would go on to fill the bases with Osborne on second and Kaity Kuhn on first, bringing up Gostomsky who would crush a ball thrown straight down the middle well over the center field fence to pull Defiance within four.
With all the momentum in the Purple and Gold's hands, DC was able to hold Mules scoreless in the remaining four innings. Down 13-11 in the bottom of the seventh inning, Bauer would come up big for the Yellow Jackets, crushing a triple to left field, pushing Perry and Ely King home, giving DC the 13-12 victory.
In game two, the Yellow Jackets dropped a heartbreaker, falling 10-8 to the Fighting Muskies of Muskingum University. MU was first on the board, recording four runs on five big hits in the first inning. Defiance picked up a run in the second off a Jordan Osborne double to left center that sent Geraci rounding the bases.
Muskingum went on to extend their advantage to 6-1 in the bottom of the second, scoring on a 2-run RBI sacrifice fly to right field. The Yellow Jackets were not going down without a fight, however, and would pull together to earn four runs in the top of the third. Perry kick-started the run on a single to center field, advancing Mariah Huff to second and Gostomsky home. This brought Bauer up to the plate, laying down a bunt to push pinch-runner Jessica Mello home and close the gap 6-3. With bases loaded, Geraci played the count, winning a base on balls to score Bauer before Patty notched the final run of the inning on an Osborn SAC fly to left field.
In the fifth, the Muskies continued to pad their lead, adding another pair of runs to go up 8-5. Defiance once again dug deep, coming up with three runs in the top of the sixth, two of which were added by Perry on a two-run RBI single to center field. Pinch-runner Jen Nashalsky recorded the tying run as Patty earned a walk with bases loaded.
MU's consistent batting would ultimately earn them the win in this afternoon's contest as they tallied two more runs in the bottom of the sixth. With one opportunity left, the Yellow Jackets came up just short, failing to connect in the top of the seven, finalizing the 10-8 decision.
The Purple and Gold return to the field on Friday, March 16 as they travel to Kalamazoo University for a pair of games in Kalamazoo, Michigan. First pitch is set for 3:30 PM.