FRIDAY, APRIL 20, 2012
Dolphins win the battle of 9-A
In a pivotal Atlantic Sun matchup, the Jacksonville Dolphins swept the cross-town rival UNF Ospreys on senior night Friday at the UNF Softball Complex. JU took game one 4-2, followed by a 5-1 victory in game two.
The Dolphins picked up two big A-Sun victories to move to 9-7 in the conference and 28-21 overall while the Ospreys fall to 7-9 in the A-Sun standings.
Senior pitcher Brittany Eppley continued her superior play in conference earning a save in game one and the win in game two. In 8.2 innings of work, she allowed just one run and eight hits while striking out 12 Osprey batters.
Eppley dominated the UNF batters all night long, none more evident than when she came on in relief in the bottom of the sixth inning with JU leading 4-2. After consecutive singles put two runners on for UNF with only one out, Dolphins head coach Ali Higgs made the move to replace starter Sarah Sigrest with Eppley. The move paid off as Eppley struck out the next two batters to end the inning and rally, and then returned to close out the game in the seventh with three more strikeouts.
Karson Tuck and Sarah Simon lead the way at the plate in game one with each going 2-3 and combining for three RBI.
The second game was more of the same from Eppley and the Dolphins.
No runs were scored by either team until the top of the fourth inning when JU was able to load the bases. Three straight singles by Kayla Ouellet, Amanda Schmidt, and Ashley Simon gave JU bases loaded with no outs. Sarah Simon singled to bring in a run along with Jacey Warner who produced an RBI groundout. JU led 2-0 after the inning and that is all Eppley would need.
Three more insurance runs were added to the 2-0 lead in the top of the seventh for JU, although they proved unnecessary. The Ospreys scored a meaningless run in the bottom half of the inning but could really never get a hang of Eppley’s pitches or get the ball past the Dolphin defenders.
Several Dolphins displayed excellent glove work throughout the night highlighted by Warner and short stop Ronnie Gajownik who both made spectacular diving catches in key situations to prevent extra bases and runs being scored.
Jacksonville returns to action this Tuesday when they host Georgia Southern for a doubleheader at the JU Softball Complex. The first of the two games is scheduled to begin at 5:00 pm.