April 13, 2014
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PITTSBURGH - The Panthers allowed six runs in the final inning of play and the University of Pittsburgh softball team (13-22, 4-12 ACC) lost the series finale to Syracuse University (18-18, 9-7 ACC) by the score of 12-7 on Sunday afternoon at Vartabedian Field.
Pitt tallied its first five runs via the long ball, but allowed 18 hits to the Orange in the loss and Syracuse also left 14 runners on base. The Orange out-hit the Panthers 38-18 during the three game series.
Courtesy of Maggie Sevilla's team-leading ninth homer of the season, the Panthers grabbed a 3-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning. After Carly Thea reached on an error and Tori Nirschl earned a walk, Sevilla hit a line drive over the fence in left center to put the Panthers on the board.
Syracuse would respond in the top of the second inning by scoring four runs on five hits, including a two-run shot from right fielder Mary Dombrowski. Pitt starting pitcher Alexa Larkin would allow that homer, three doubles and a single in that inning before she was replaced by Savannah King.
The Panthers came right back in the bottom of the second when Kathryn Duran connected on her first home run of the season which tied the game at 4-4. Syracuse would regain the lead in the third with an RBI single from Dombrowski to give SU a 5-4 advantage. King limited the damage and worked herself out of a bases loaded jam to keep it a one run game.
Tori Nirschl then tied the game with Pitt's third four-bagger of the contest as she hit a towering solo shot to straight away center field. It was her sixth round-tripper of the season and her second of the series.
Dombrowski's fourth RBI of the game gave Syracuse a 6-5 lead in the top of the fourth inning. Prior to this game, Dombrowski had three RBI the entire season.
After two scoreless innings, the Orange broke the game wide open with six runs in the final inning. Syracuse loaded the bases with consecutive hits and a walk to open the frame, which brought up SU's leader in runs batted in, Jasmine Watson. Watson provided a two run single which made the score 8-5, and two batter later Sydney O'Hara roped a bases loaded double with cleared the bags and gave SU an 11-5 advantage. That would chase King from the game and the Orange tacked on a final run with a sacrifice fly.
Showing some grit, the Panthers scored two runs in the bottom of the seventh, including an RBI single from Tori Nirschl and an RBI sacrifice fly from Taylor Henry, however, SU closed the game with fly out and a groundout to complete the sweep.
Pitt will look to end a five game skid this Wednesday when the Panthers host No. 8/7 Florida State at Vartabedian Field. First pitch is set for 2 p.m.