PLANT CITY, Fla. -- On a day with multiple schedule alterations due to heavy rains in the Plant City area, the Heidelberg University softball team dropped a close game to Bluffton University (Ohio) by a final score of 5-3.
Game one vs. Illinois College was canceled, and game two vs. Bluffton was pushed from a 2:30 p.m. start time to 6:30 p.m.
With the loss against the Beavers (1-3), the Student Princes now hold a record of 1-2 after just three games played.
Joanna Catalano went 3-for-3 from the plate including two doubles to the fence and an RBI.
Game One: Illinois College vs. Heidelberg
Originally scheduled for 10:00 a.m. the game against IC was canceled due to heavy rains the previous evening and unplayable field conditions. There are currently no plans to make-up the game.
Game Two: Heidelberg - 3, Bluffton - 5
Two home runs and a three-run top of the seventh inning proved to be the difference for Bluffton under the lights on a breezy, Florida evening.
The Student Princes grabbed the lead in the bottom of the first after Stephanie Drapp worked a 1-2-3 top half of the inning. Shelby Miller was hit by a pitch, Raye Hammond stitched a single up the middle, and Casey Moore lined a hit to shallow left center.
Bailee Faulkner the grounded into a fielder's choice to bring home the first score of the evening.
The Beavers responded with a run of their own in the second to even the score. Heidelberg aimed to regain the lead in the bottom of the second with runners on first and second. Shelby Miller laced a single to right field, but Catalano was thrown out attempting to score.
In the bottom of the third inning, the Berg once again benefited from a fielder's choice as Hannah Ours knocked in a run with the bases loaded. After previously walking, Moore scored the go-ahead run.
With the Berg in what seemed like full control, Bluffton drew level once again in the top of the sixth inning on a solo blast by Caylin Morstadt.
Hoping to regain the lead heading to the final inning, the Berg was once again victim of a big play by the Bluffton outfield. Moore once again walked, and advanced to second on a wild pitch. Faulkner lined a single through the left side and Moore attempted to score, but was ruled out at home.
In the seventh, Bluffton followed up a leadoff double with a sac bunt to put a runner on third. After a strikeout, the Beavers took their first lead of the night with a single up the middle.
Morstadt was next to the plate, and once again sent a ball over the left center fence for her second home run of the game to all but seal the game.
In the bottom of the seventh, the Berg tried to rally and quickly worked into a promising situation. After Brooke Lewis walked, Ours singled through the left side of the infield to put two runners on. A double-play looked to close off the comeback efforts, but Catalano smoked her second double of the game to the left center fence to score Ours from second.
Kat Brady looked to keep the momentum going with two outs, but her liner up the middle was snagged by the Bluffton pitcher.
Drapp started for the Berg, lasting six innings. The freshman earned a no decision, with a seven hit, two run showing, Morgan Daniels (0-2) was saddled with the loss in relief. Katie McCord (1-1) earned the victory for the Beavers.
The Student Princes will be back in action tomorrow afternoon for two more games in Florida. First, HU will square off against the College of Saint Benedict at 1:15 p.m. before playing Saint John Fisher College at 3:30 p.m.