LANCASTER, Pa. – The Franklin & Marshall softball team dropped a pair of games to Ursinus on Thursday afternoon in Centennial Conference (CC) action. The Diplomats (4-12, 0-4 CC) were outslugged 11-6 in game one before falling to the Bears (8-6, 3-1 CC) 8-1 in the second contest.
After a pair of scoreless innings to open up the first game, Ursinus exploded for eight runs on six hits and two F&M errors in the top of the third to take the 8-0 advantage. The Diplomats tried to chip away at the lead in the bottom half of the frame when Malorie Sassaman singled through the left side to score Julianne Whitleigh from third.
F&M began to mount a comeback in the bottom of the fourth with a three-run, four-hit inning to cut the deficit to four at 8-4. Ashley Hartshorn kicked off the frame with a leadoff single to right field.
Whitleigh stepped into the box and ripped her second hit of the game, a double down the leftfield line, to advance Hartshorn to third. After a Danielle Murphy walk loaded the bases, Nicole Casey came to the plate and singled through the left side to score Whitleigh from third. Sassaman capped off the scoring with a sacrifice fly to leftfield that sent Caitlin Brust home from third.
After Ursinus added on another run in the top of the fifth to make the score 9-4, Whitleigh pulled the Diplomats to within three at 9-6 when the senior outfielder cracked her second home run of the season, a two-run shot to left field in the bottom of the frame.
The comeback effort fell short for F&M as the Bears tacked on two more runs in the top of the seventh to pull ahead by a final score of 11-6.
Whitleigh batted a perfect 3-for-3 at the plate with two RBIs and three runs scored. Sassaman went 2-for-3 and knocked in a pair of runs as the Diplomats combined for 12 hits.
Kaitlin Zampino (1-7) was charged with the loss after surrendering three earned runs on 14 hits in a complete game effort.
Ursinus took an early 2-0 lead in the top of the first to open the second game of the double header. The Bears took advantage of a pair of errors from F&M and combined for three hits in the inning.
A four run top of the fifth extended Ursinus' lead to 7-0 until Sarah Kirk singled to score Sam Denoville from third in the bottom of the sixth to pull the Diplomats within six. However, the Bears added another run in the top of the frame en route to the 8-1 final.
DeNoville paced the offense with a 2-for-3 effort at the plate. Justine Lohrey (3-5) recorded the loss after surrendering five earned runs off of 11 hits in seven innings on the mound.
Starting pitcher Zoe Heinke (4-2) picked up the win for Ursinus after striking out eight batters and allowing only five hits in a complete-game performance.
F&M takes to the road on Saturday to face off against CC-opponent McDaniel at 1:00 p.m.