CHARLOTTE, N.C. – The Canisius softball team dropped a pair of one-run games to Charlotte at the First Pitch Classic on Saturday, falling to the 49ers 9-8 in the first game before dropping the second game of the day by a score of 4-3. The Golden Griffins are now 3-5 on the year.
Canisius got the day started quickly, scoring three runs in the top of the first to take a 3-0 lead on Charlotte. But the 49ers (7-3) answered with three runs of their own in the home half of the first to knot the game at 3-3. An RBI-single by junior Moriah Harris in the third put the Blue and Gold up 4-3, but that was lead was short-lived, as Charlotte scored twice in the bottom of that frame to take a 5-4 lead after three.
Canisius trailed 7-4 heading into the sixth, but the Griffs would regain the lead in that inning thanks to a four-run outburst. The Griffs started the rally with four-straight hits, including an RBI-single by freshman Gianna Degaltini, and a sac-fly to center by freshman Ashley Barnett pushed a second run across the dish. After senior Lindsey Silfer drew a walk to load the bases, sophomore Lauren Castro drove in a pair of runs with a base hit to center field. The 49ers tied the game at 8-8 in the bottom of the sixth with a single run, and after the Griffs went down in order in the seventh, Charlotte scored the victory with a safety-squeeze plat that allowed Grace Beatty to score from third.
The Griffs pounded out a season-high 13 hits in the loss, with four players recording multi-hit efforts. Castro went 3-for-4 with two doubles, two RBI and a run scored, while senior Samantha Sharkey, freshman Cassie Ho and Degaltini all had two hits in the losing cause. Junior Madi Weather took the loss in the circle after she allowed four runs on seven hits to go with a strikeout in 3.1 innings of work. Castro threw three innings and allowed five runs on five hits while walking one and striking out one.
In the second game, Charlotte scored a pair of runs in the second and third to take a 4-0 lead, but the Griffs battled back with a solo run in the fifth to make the score 4-1. Canisius’ first run in game two came after Barnett homered to left, her second home run of the weekend. In the sixth, Harris led the inning off with a walk and then scored a short-time later on a two-run homer by sophomore Denver Keller. That was as close as the Griffs would come in that game however, as Charlotte pitcher Haley Wiseman retired six of the last seven batters she faced after Keller’s homer to seal the win for Charlotte.
Barnett reached base four times in the game two loss, as she went 2-for-2 with a homer, two walks, an RBI and a run scored. Canisius starter Erika Mackie took the loss for the Blue and Gold after she allowed four runs, two of which were earned, on nine hits while fanning four.
Inside the Box Score
• Canisius left seven runners on base in each of the games on Saturday.
• The Griffs have nine home runs as a team through the first eight games of the season. Last year, the team had a total of 25 home runs in 55 games.
• Castro’s two doubles in the first game give her six two-base hits for the season. Last year, she had eight doubles in 49 games (168 plate appearances).
• This was the second and third all-time meeting between Canisius and Charlotte in softball. The 49ers now lead the series 2-1.
• Four of Canisius’ first eight games this season have been decided by one run. The Griffs are 0-4 in those four contests.
Canisius will close out its trip to the First Pitch Classic in Charlotte, North Carolina on Sunday when the team plays St. Bonaventure. First pitch is set for 10 a.m.