March 18, 2006
ATLANTA, Ga. - The University of Maryland softball team dropped both of its ACC-opening games today in a doubleheader against Georgia Tech at Glenn Field in Atlanta, Ga. The Terps (11-12) start out 0-2 in the conference while the Yellow Jackets improve to 24-6 and 2-0 in ACC play. Maryland fell 4-1 in the first game and 9-0 in the second.
The Terrapins had nine hits on the day, including doubles from Nikki Smith, Lindsay Klein and Keri Lounge, yet could not match up with Georgia Tech's three home runs and 16 hits. The Terps were held without a run in both games. Maryland pitchers Crystal Crews and Meredith Nelles each took losses falling to 8-4 and 3-5, respectively.
Georgia Tech got on the scoreboard first in the game as sophomore Savannah Brown's single up the middle brought in Christine Sheridan who walked on base for 1-0.
The Terps tied the game at the top of third inning when Klein hit a laser to center field scoring Lounge, who had advanced after a single to left field.
The Yellow Jackets responded with three runs in the bottom of the third. With two outs, freshman pitcher Whitney Haller and Brown had a double and a single when Amy Hosier's double to right field and a Terrapin error brought both Yellow Jackets home. Hosier would then score from Caitlyn Lever's double for a 4-1 lead. The final out of the inning came when Whitney Reigel had a key defensive play to first leaving Lever on base.
The Terps tried to close the gap in the fourth inning. Senior designated hitter Rachel Greyson and sophomore Jenny Belak had singles up the middle, but Devon Williams' hit to left field was caught for the third out. The next three innings were scoreless for a final score of 4-1.
Crews had three strikeouts in the game and two walks over 3.0 innings pitched. Whitney Humphries took the win for Georgia Tech to go 13-2 on the year, while Haller had her third save.
The Yellow Jackets jumped to an early lead in the second game and ran up the scoreboard with the Terrapins falling 8-0 in six innings. Abbey Welch started in the circle for the Terps for her fourth start of the year. Belak's two singles and Reigel's single accounted for the Terps three hits in the game.
In the first inning, lead-off hitter Belak's quick step landed her on base after a single to the pitcher. She advanced to third on a passed ball. The next two Terrapins were out on strikes and a ground out to the pitcher.
In the bottom of the first, Georgia Tech's Sheridan hit a triple to left center that brought in Morales, who had doubled. Haller then walked on base. The Terps had a tough break with the next at-bat, when Hosier's single up the middle bounced left off the second base plate for a missed play opportunity, scoring both Sheridan and Haller for a 3-0 lead.
The Yellow Jackets added two more runs in the second inning, with Brown's two-run home run, and one in the third inning when Lever scored for 6-0.
In the fifth inning with one out, Maryland second base starter Lounge made a key defensive play. Lever nailed a hard grounder to Lounge, who tagged Hosier on her way to second base then made the throw to first for the second out to close the inning.
Kristina Hull had a home run in the sixth inning, followed by Sheridan't two-run home run in the bottom of the sixth, which cemented the win for Georgia Tech in six innings.
The Terps face the Yellow Jackets Sunday at 12:00 for the final game of the three-game series. The game can be followed on Game Tracker.