The Canisius College softball team ended its Spring Break down south with a 7-5 loss Sunday morning to Towson on the final day of the USF Invite in Clearwater, Fla. The Golden Griffins scored three times in the top of the first, but the Tigers answered with five runs in the first two frames and added two insurance runs late to seal the victory. Canisius is now 4-17 on the year.
Canisius freshman Michelle DelPrince recorded her first career three-hit game as she went 3-for-4 with two runs scored and an RBI in the loss, while senior Lauren Falzone and junior Katie Medina added two hits apiece to the Griffs' effort. Falzone ripped her first triple of the season in the game and Medina picked up her second double of the year as the Blue and Gold ended the contest with nine hits as a team.
Towson (13-11) was led offensively by senior Brianna Jones, who went 2-for-4 with a double and four RBIs in the win. Freshman pitcher Missy McCormick came on in relief and earned her third win of the season in the circle for the Tigers after she allowed two runs on five hits to go with two strikeouts in six innings of work.
Canisius jumped out to an early 3-0 lead after batting in the top of the first inning. Falzone got the game started with a leadoff triple and she crossed the plate moments later on an RBI-single by DelPrince. DelPrince would score later in the frame on a sacrifice-fly by freshman Robin Kennery, and Medina made it 3-0 in favor of the Blue and Gold when she ripped a two-out double to the gap in right center that allowed senior Lizzy Gatto to score from third.
Towson answered Canisius' first-inning scoring burst with five runs over the first two innings, highlighted by a three-run second frame that put the Tigers in the lead for good. With the score at 3-2 in favor of the Griffs, Jones stepped to the plate with one down and dropped a double into left field that allowed two runs to score, giving Towson a 4-3 advantage. Towson pushed its hold to 5-3 later in the frame when sophomore Delanie Dunham was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded, allowing a run to score.
Towson added two more run in the bottom half of the fourth to make the score 7-3, but Canisius scored twice in the top of the fifth to make it a two-run game at 7-5. In the fifth with two runners on, sophomore Valorie Nappo knocked in a run with an RBI-single through the right side of the infield to make it 7-4, and DelPrince would score a short time later on a fielding error by Towson freshman Hailey Balk. However, those would be the last runs scored on the day by the Griffs as McCormick would retire the Blue and Gold in order in the sixth and seventh innings to lock up the victory.
Canisius senior Caroline Main took the loss in the circle for the Griffs after she allowed five runs, two of those earned, on three hits while walking five and striking out one in 1.2 innings of work. Sophomore Jen Consaul came on in relief and gave up two runs on four hits in 1.2 innings of action and freshman Corrine Shaus threw 2.2 innings in relief where she did not allow a run or a hit while striking out one and walking one.
The Griffs will return to action Saturday, March 24, when the team takes part in a split doubleheader in the Carrier Dome in Syracuse. Canisius will play Colgate at 10:30 a.m., before meeting the host Orange at 12:30 p.m. Those two games will mark the Griffs' first games in the state of New York this season.
Game Notes: This was the 11th all-time meeting between Canisius and Towson, with the Tigers leading the series by a 6-5 count... The three hits for DelPrince extends her hitting streak to three games, which is the longest hitting streak of her young collegiate career... The leadoff triple for Falzone was the fifth three-base hit of her career... Nappo has six RBIs through the team's first 21 games this season - she had eight RBIs in 36 games last season as a freshman... Kennery's sacrifice fly was the first in her career and gives her a team-high 10 runs batted in this season... The start on Sunday for Main was the 61st in her career, which ranks 10th all-time in school history.