March 1, 2013
Box Scores: Portland State (W, 8-3) | #17 Arizona (L, 6-3)
Wildcat Invitational Gametracker/Video Links
TUCSON, Ariz. - The Boston University softball team kicked off the Wildcat Invitational with an 8-3 win over Portland State before dropping a 6-3 decision to No. 17 Arizona on Friday evening. With the split, the Terriers move to 2-5 on the season.
A 2012 America East All-Conference First Team honoree, junior Jayme Mask went 4-of-4 in the first game against the Vikings (4-13) and played a key role in five of the runs scored by driving in three Terriers and reaching home plate twice. Pitching a complete game in her second win of the season against a 2012 NCAA participant, senior Whitney Tuthill (2-2) scattered eight hits over seven innings, allowing three earned runs and striking out three batters.
In the second contest, the Terriers cut a five-run deficit to two behind a sixth-inning three-run blast to left by junior Megan Volpano, but Arizona (12-5) added an insurance score and went to the bullpen to hold off the rally. Undone by seven walks, freshman Lauren Hynes (0-2) battled valiantly by stranding eight runners on base through the first five innings to avoid the mercy-run rule and allow BU to mount a comeback. She gave up seven hits and all six runs while striking out five Wildcats in her second career start.
Facing the Big Sky's Preseason No. 1 Portland State, BU entered the game having scored a combined eight runs through the first five games. Trailing 1-0 in the top of the third, sophomore Emily Felbaum singled up the middle and then scored on a triple to right by Mask, who was later brought home on junior Brittany Clendenny's grounder to first.
After a solo shot by the Vikings, Mask again tied the game in the fourth with a two-out single to center, as Hynes rushed home from second. The Terriers left a combined four runners on base in the fourth and fifth, allowing Portland State to tie the game in the bottom of the fifth with two hits, including an RBI double.
Mask though continued her stellar play at the plate by earning a second two-out single up the middle. She would use her speed to score the go-ahead run from first on a clutch double to right center by senior Emily Roesch. The Vikings had a runner at second with one out in the sixth, but Tuthill induced the strikeout and a grounder to short for the final two outs.
The Terriers then added four more runs in the seventh with just one hit by sophomore Mandy Fernandez. BU was hit by a pitch twice and drew two walks, while the Vikings committed two errors in the loss.
Playing in the Wildcat Invitational against Arizona for the first time since 2005, the Terriers found themselves in a 3-0 hole in the bottom of the first. The host school earned an infield single and walk before using a double steal to put runners at second and third with just one out. Chelsea Goodacre then singled through the left side for two RBIs and later reached home after a stolen base and two walks. Hynes left the bases loaded by getting the strike out.
Arizona scored what proved to be the game-winning run in the botom of the third when Lauren Young hit a two-run homer after Nancy Bowling was walked to start the inning. The Terriers mounted their rally in the sixth when Mask and Roesch reached base by a walk and hit-by-pitch, respectively. Volpano's home run marked the team's first of the season and her ninth-career blast over the fence.
With two outs, Clendenny doubled to left, but she was thrown out at home when trying to score on an infield single by Hynes. The Terriers would not get any closer, as Goodacre added an insurance run with a homer to left.
Shelby Babcock picked up the save for Arizona by allowing just one hit. Estela Pinon (4-2) claimed the win with three runs on five hits.
BU will return to the diamond on Saturday (March 2) with another doubleheader. The Terriers will first face UC Riverside (6-10) in the first-ever meeting between the two programs at 1 p.m. ET before getting a rematch with the Wildcats at 6 p.m. ET.
The Highlanders opened the event with a 1-0 win over Portland State before Arizona claimed a 12-2 mercy-rule victory in five innings.