SAINT LEO, Fla. – The Saint Leo softball team (17-25, 2-10 SSC) dropped its Sunshine State Conference doubleheader to the Nova Southeastern University Sharks, Sunday afternoon from University Softball Field. Saint Leo fell by the score of 4-3 in opener, before succumbing to the Sharks, 7-0, in game two.
A three-run home run off the bat of Laura Saladrigas highlighted the Sharks come-from-behind win in the opener, before holding Lions' hitters to just three hits in game two.
Saint Leo compiled six hits on the afternoon, including a pair of multiple-hit performances from Alex Garris and Brittany Yates. Yates also led the team in RBI with two. Rachelle Gremo and McKenzie Burns also etched their names into the scorebook as they recorded the Lions other two base hits.
Finding themselves down 1-0 after NSU's first at-bats, the Lions rallied to take the lead in the bottom of the first inning as Yates stroked an RBI single up the middle scoring Burns from second. Two batters later, Gremo gave the Lions the advantage as she roped the squad's second RBI single of the inning back through the middle.
Lions' starter Megan Still kept Sharks' hitters at bay over the next three frames, but Laura Saladrigas gave NSU the lead for good in the top of the fifth as she connected on a three-run home run over the leftfield fence to give the visiting Sharks a 4-2 lead.
Saint Leo got one run closer in the fifth inning as a Yates' bases loaded groundout brought home Angela Kafalas. Unfortunately, Saint Leo couldn't add to their score any further as Sharks' hurler Sara DeMuth retired the next two batters of the inning en route to her 18th win of the season.
Megan Still (7-15) was tagged with the loss for Saint Leo as she struck out a pair in 4.2 innings. Ashley Ehlers was excellent in relief as she went 2.1 innings of hitless ball, while striking out three.
NSU replicated their start in game two as they scored one run in the top of the first inning.
The Sharks continued their aggressive swinging throughout the duration as they padded their lead with a three-run third inning, in addition to a trio of runs scored across the sixth and seventh innings.
The Lions mounted one last comeback attempt in the sixth inning, but back-to-back singles by Garris and Yates went for not as the duo was stranded on base.
Kristen Kelly (4-7) collected the loss for SLU, while Sharks' starter Saladrigas ran her record to 6-4 with the win.
The Lions will return to the field on Tuesday, April 3, when they host in-region opponent Flagler College. First pitch for the doubleheader is scheduled for 5 p.m. from University Softball Stadium.
For more on the softball team, visit SaintLeoLions.com.