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SOFTBALL BLANKED BY ALBANY, 8-0, IN OPENING GAME OF AMERICA EAST CHAMPIONSHIPS
Halloran faced the minimum 15 batters through the five innings. UMBC center fielder Kali Shirk walked with one out in the top of the first but was erased when first baseman Melanie Denischuk lined out to the first baseman for an unassisted double play.
The Great Danes scored three runs in the bottom of the first and five in the fourth off Retriever starter Lauren Nicholson. With one out and runners on second and third in the first inning, catcher Ali Meacham hit a two-run single to left, then came around to score two batters later on an RBI groundout by third baseman Kelly Ogden
Shortstop Maegan Larsen led off the decisive fourth inning with a home run, and the next three
Down by eight after four innings, UMBC had one final at-bat to score before the Great Danes would win via the eight-run, five-inning mercy rule. But the Retrievers went down in order in the top of the fifth to end the game.
Nicholson (19-4) suffered the loss after allowing eight runs (six earned) on seven hits and three walks while striking out four in 3.2 innings. Sadowl pitched the final one-third of an inning and allowed one hit which allowed an inherited runner to score, but she struck out the final batter she faced. Halloran pitched five no-hit, shutout innings, striking out seven Retriever batters. The only blemish on her pitching line was the walk to Shirk in the first inning.
Making their first-ever appearance in the America East Championships, a four-team double elimination tournament, the Retrievers could not muster any offense, suffering their first loss by mercy rule of the season.
The Retrievers will take on top-seeded Maine on Friday at 1:30 p.m. The Black Bears lost to fourth-seeded Boston Univiersty, 11-1, in six innings Thursday afternoon. The winner of the UMBC/Maine game will take on the loser of Friday morning's Albany/Boston U. contest, while the loser will be eliminated from the tournament.