Softball struggles in first tournament

The USF softball team lost a heartbreaker this weekend in the championship game of the Best Western Invitational Tournament. The four-team tournament was the season opener for USF.

The Bulls got on the board first when senior Samantha Ray crossed the plate thanks to an RBI single by senior Tiffany Stewart in the top of the first.

USF added to its lead in the fourth when freshman JoJo Medina knocked the ball over the left-field fence for her first collegiate home run.

Despite strong play by freshman pitcher Cristi Ecks (1-2), the rest of the game belonged to the Bulldogs.

In the bottom of the fifth, with the score 2-1 in the Bulls’ favor, Mississippi State managed to hit a double and consecutive singles to take the lead 3-2. The Bulldogs tacked on one more run to preserve the 4-2 victory.

The loss was the Bulls’ second of the tournament against the Bulldogs, who defeated USF 2-0 on Saturday.

The Bulls suffered a tough 2-1 loss to Western Kentucky on Friday before defeating them 11-3 on Sunday in a game highlighted by senior Christie Chapman’s three-run homer. Sophomore Bree Spence (1-0) also pitched a one-hitter in the victory against the Hilltoppers.

The Bulls defeated Jacksonville 7-5 on Friday in a game that marked the first collegiate start for Ecks. The freshman pitcher had a great outing, allowing only one run on four hits against the Dolphins.