Tigers Swat Indiana, 9-3, To Close Out The NFCA Leadoff Classic

#22 Megan Foglesong - Photo by: Anthony Habib
#22 Megan Foglesong - Photo by: Anthony Habib
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Clearwater, Fla. – With the end of play at the NFCA Leadoff Classic, the Pacific softball team saved the best for last as the Tigers took home a 9-3 win over Indiana on Sunday, Feb. 24. The win capped Pacific's weekend at 3-2 in Florida while running their overall record to 9-4.

In what started with a look of a classic pitchers duel quickly became a hitting clinic by the Tigers as Pacific pounded out 12 hits and plated nine runs to snap the Hoosiers three-game winning streak.

Through three innings, both teams mustered just one hit in their first trip through the lineup. Despite just one hit, the Tigers were able to turn it into a single run as Pacific turned a leadoff single by senior Megan Hom into a run in the first. Hom was able to score the opening run of the game after moving to third on a sacrifice bunt and a ground ball to the right side. She would score on an illegal pitch.

After trekking through the lineup, the Tigers began to find their groove in the fourth as a leadoff single and a stolen base by junior Megan Foglesong started a mid-game rally. With Foglesong at second, seniors Nikki Armagost and Amy Moore delivered in the middle of the lineup as the duo slapped back-to-back singles to put the Tigers up two.

In the fifth, Pacific would see its lead erased by a pair of Hoosier runs as Indiana took advantage of skilled bunting to put the Tigers on their heels. Three straight bunts and a Tiger error gave the Hoosiers runners at second and third while a single and a squeeze notched the two runs.

Despite the damage, the Tigers immediately rebounded in the bottom half of the inning as a pair of doubles by senior Megan Allen and freshman Melanie Habib got the inning rolling. After driving in the first run of the inning, Habib scored the fourth and what would be the game-winning run on a single by Foglesong.

With the game in hand, Pacific blew the contest open in the bottom of the sixth as five runs crossed the plate on five hits. Beginning with a single from Moore, the Tigers put four straight on base as freshman Nicole Zapotoczny singled in front of a fielder's choice that netted the Hoosiers no outs. Staring at the bases full of Tigers, sophomore Alex Steinmehl kept the hit party going with an RBI single to right. From there, it was the top of the order that knocked the Hoosiers out as Hom tripled to center to plate three while Foglesong traded places with her by slashing a triple of her own to left-center. 

Overall, the top of the order in Hom and Foglesong accounted for five hits and five RBI as the Hom tallied a pair of hits while Foglesong was 3-for-3. Joining the pair with a multi-hit game of her own was Moore as the senior went 2-for-3 with an RBI. 

In the circle, Armagost proved to be in complete control throughout the morning as the senior went 7.0 innings en route to her fifth win of the year. Overall, Armagost gave up five hits and three runs, two earned, while striking out six and walking two. On the other side of the rubber, Lora Olson fell to 5-2 on the year as the Hoosier ace was tagged for six hits and four runs in 4.1 innings. In relief, Meaghan Murphy gave up six hits and five runs of her own in 1.2 innings of work.

At the conclusion of the tournament, Habib was named to the all-tournament team as the freshman hit .429 with six hits, seven RBI and two runs scored.

The Tigers will be back in action on Tuesday, Feb. 26 as Pacific comes home for the first time in 2013 with a contest against St. John's. The game is scheduled for 2:00 pm from Bill Simoni Field.