Washington, D.C. – Imani Dawson (Hanover, Md./Seton Keough) hit her first career home run, but the UMBC softball team (1-11) dropped both games, against Virginia and Iona respectively, on Saturday afternoon at the Nationals Youth Academy.
Virginia (7-11) opened the scoring early, scoring a run in the first inning. They would add three more in the second inning before unloading eight runs in the third inning to go up 11-0. UMBC would get on the board in the top of the fourth, coming from Dawson's home run. After a Carly Lesko (New Milford, N.J./New Milford) walk, Dawson would come in to pinch hit and hit her first collegiate home run over the left center wall to make the score 12-2.
However, not much more offense would be mustered from the Retrievers, as the run rule would come into play after the fifth inning.
UMBC and Iona (3-4) would start off scoreless, as no Iona base runner made it past second base for the first three innings. The Gaels would strike first though, scoring a run in the top of the fourth off a double down the left field line. Both teams didn't touch home plate for the next two innings. A leadoff home run in the seventh inning would change that, as Iona increased their lead to two.
A fielding error would allow the next batter to get on, and would start a string of runners getting on that would lead to Marisa Gergel hitting a grand slam to make it 6-0 in favor of Iona. All four runs scored on the grand slam were unearned. The game would end with the score 6-0.
Kim Puccio (Sparta, N.J./Sparta) threw a season high nine strikeouts in the complete game effort.
UMBC returns to action tomorrow, Sunday, March 4, as they play against the host of the tournament in a single game. First pitch against Georgetown is scheduled for 3:00 pm.