WALTHAM, Mass.- In Brandeis softball's final two games at the University Athletic Association (UAA) Tournament, they split decisions against Case Western Reserve and 21st ranked Washington (Mo.). In their first matchup of the day, the Judges crushed the Case Spartans 11-3 led by a terrific day at the plate by senior CF Lauren Porcaro (Shrewsbury, Mass./ Shrewsbury) as eight different Brandeis players crossed the plate. In their second matchup against the Bears, the Judges fought hard and rallied to tie the game in the seventh inning but fell in the bottom of the frame. Brandeis finished their trip 3-5 (3-5 UAA) while Case fell to 6-6 (3-4 UAA) and Washington improved to 10-5 (4-4 UAA).
In the first game against the Spartans, the early going was a see-saw affair. The Judges entered the bottom of the fifth down 3-2 and looking for a spark. Senior 1B Marianne Specker (So. Windsor, Conn./ Westminster School) started it off with a double before pinch runner Mimi Theodore (Walpole, Mass./ Walpole) entered the game and scored on an error in the outfield from rookie 3B Anya Kamber's (Sammamish, Wash./ Skyline) flyball to tie the game. After two quick outs, sophomore pitcher Melissa Nolan (Windsor, Conn./ Loomis Chaffee) stepped up and delivered a clutch RBI single to give the lead back to Brandeis. In the sixth inning, things got a little ugly as the Judges ran away with the game, bringing 10 batters to the plate and scoring seven runs to account for the final tally of 11-3. Nolan had a great start, pitching a complete game while allowing four hits, three runs (two earned runs) and pacing Brandeis throughout the contest.
In Brandeis' second game against the Bears, the Judges jumped out to an early lead when senior SS Brittany Grimm (Perkiomenville, Pa./ Perkiomen Valley) singled home rookie RF Amanda Genovese (No. Haven, Conn./ No. Haven) followed by a double from Specker that brought Grimm across the plate. Still, Washington stayed tough and responded with two runs in the fourth to tie the game and two runs in the fifth to take the lead. In the seventh inning, Brandeis rallied starting with a one out single from Genovese. With Genovese on first and the Judges down two, Grimm stepped to the plate and delivered with a two-run homer to tie the game. Unfortunately, despite to quick outs to start the bottom of the frame, the Bears rallied with three straight singles that resulted in a walk-off 5-4 loss for Brandeis. Still, senior pitcher Caroline Miller (Bala Cynwyd, Pa./ Harriton) did have a good start pitching all 6.2 innings while racking up a season-high seven strikeouts. Meanwhile, the top four hitters in the Judges lineup had an excellent game going 9-16 with four runs and four RBI.
Brandeis returns home from Florida to continue their season with a doubleheader against WPI on Friday, March 23rd starting at 3:00 p.m.