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A day after being badly beaten in the NCAA tournament opener on Thursday, the Maroons trounced Penn State-Altoon 9-1 on Friday.
Courtesy Roanoke College | File
Alea Bier hit .378 with two homers, 21 RBIs and 18 steals for Roanoke College this season. She had two hits and an RBI in the Maroons' victory Friday.
Saturday, May 11, 2013
The Roanoke College softball team was determined not to make an early exit from the NCAA Division III tournament.
After losing Thursday to put themselves in a win-or-else situation, the Maroons bounced back with a 9-1 victory over Penn State-Altoona on Friday in an NCAA regional at the Moyer Sports Complex in Salem.
"We came out with a fire. We knew this could be our last day," said Alea Bier, a Cave Spring graduate who had two hits and one RBI. "We had a better fire than we did yesterday. We came out ready to play today.
"Nobody wanted it to be our last day."
Fifth-seeded Roanoke (31-13) had fallen into the losers bracket after being thrashed by Christopher Newport 8-0 in its tournament opener Thursday.
"We wanted to come back and fight a little bit harder as a team, and I think we definitely accomplished that," said Hollee Warlitner, an Alleghany graduate who had two hits and three RBIs. "We played the way that we knew how to play today."
Roanoke's game Thursday was called midway through the fifth because of the lopsided score.
Friday's game was called with one out in the bottom of the sixth because of the lopsided score - and this time with Roanoke on the winning end of it.
"I know how much that stinks to be the other team, obviously. We just did it yesterday," Bier said.
Roanoke will face Piedmont or Emory in another elimination game at 2 p.m. Saturday.
The Maroons banged out 13 hits against the eighth-seeded Lions (27-12), who went 0-2 in the eight-team, double-elimination regional .
Roanoke scored two runs in the bottom of the fourth to grab a 2-1 lead.
Bier doubled and scored on Warlitner's RBI single. Warlitner advanced to second on the throw home.
When Stephanie Clark hit a grounder, it looked like Warlitner might be thrown out at third on a fielder's choice. But the third baseman committed an error while trying to make the tag, so Warlitner was safe at third.
With one out, Warlitner slid home when Kelly Higbie put down a squeeze bunt.
"I got the signal and laid it down; it was a great feeling," Higbie said. "There's some, hopefully, havoc caused."
"Kelly had a beautiful bunt," Warlitner said. "The girl tagged me with her glove and had the ball in the other hand."
Roanoke added two runs in the fifth and five in the sixth.
Leona Rainey had two hits, including a two-RBI single. Liberty graduate Morgan Wood had a pinch-hit, two-RBI single. Higbie had two hits and one RBI.
Higbie (17-8), who took the loss Thursday, earned the win in relief Friday. She pitched 2 2⁄3
scoreless innings, allowing two hits and one walk.
With the Lions leading 1-0 and two runners on base, Higbie relieved Clark with one out in the fourth. After walking the first batter she faced, Higbie retired the next two batters on a strikeout and grounder to get out of the jam.
"A couple of my movement pitches were working a little better [than on Thursday]," Higbie said. "I was hitting my spots just a little bit more."
Penn State-Altoona 000 100 - 1 7 1
Roanoke 000 225 - 9 13 3
DeArmitt, Jackson (6) and Glunt; Clark, Higbie (4) and Frick. W- Higbie (17-8). L- DeArmitt (9-5).
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