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Louisville silences USF bats

The South Florida Softball team lost consecutive games Saturday at Louisville for the first time since March 8 on the second day of the Speedline Invitational.

Jessica Rak pitched both games for a total of 13 innings and 200 pitches to lead Louisville (17-17, 5-2) to 2-1 and 8-0 victories. She leads Conference USA with 142 1/3 innings and 15 wins.

Despite Rak’s performance, the Bulls credit the two losses to a less-than-stellar attitude.

“We were just off this weekend,” sophomore outfielder Holly Groves said. “She wasn’t throwing anything this week.”

The Bulls regard the weekend more as a defeat due to a lack of intensity, rather than the Cardinals dominating them.

“I think everyone tried to pump everyone up, but it didn’t happen,” Groves said. “We were nonchalant towards the game.”

USF’s two leading pitchers, Corin Tassio and Niki Trowell, allowed a combined 17 hits, including seven in the second game from C-USA Pitcher of the Week Tassio (8-6). Trowell (8-10) allowed 10 hits in only 5 1/3 innings.

The Bulls’ (19-23-1, 5-5) bats struggled against the Cardinals with only three hits each game.

The Bulls, who lead the conference with 125 walks, could only get three free passes in the first game and had trouble getting their offense started, holding the league-leading base stealers to two bases.

The Bulls scored their lone run of the weekend when Carmela Liwag scored on a sacrifice fly by Renee Oursler.

The Bulls will have time to get back to their winning ways during their next game April 10 when they host Florida.

“I think we learned from it. I don’t think we’ll ever have that same attitude towards the game again,” Groves said. “(We) didn’t like the way (we) felt after the game.”