The Ferris State University softball team scored first but it was nationally-ranked Saginaw Valley State who tallied the most runs as the Bulldogs suffered a 4-1 loss in Wednesday's (March 31) second game of a season-opening Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) doubleheader at the FSU Softball Field in Big Rapids, Mich.
Ferris State, which is now 9-9 overall and 0-2 in the GLIAC this season to date, produced the nightcap's first run in the top of the first inning as senior designated player Rhea Flores' (Dearborn Heights/Southgate Anderson) RBI groundout to second base scored freshman outfielder Morgan Kramerich (Crest Hill, Ill./Lockport).
FSU's one-run lead held up until the bottom of the second when Saginaw Valley State tallied a pair of runs on three hits to claim a 2-1 advantage after two innings. The key hit for the Cardinals was a two-RBI double down the left field line by Shannon McLaughlin off Ferris State's freshman pitcher Dana Bowler (Lockport, Ill.) with two outs.
Saginaw Valley State would increase its lead to 4-0 with a pair of runs in the bottom of the fourth frame as the Cardinals capitalized on a pair of passed balls. SVSU pitcher Kari Bowlby (6-0) was able to hold Ferris State in check as she limited the Bulldogs to five hits while walking two and striking out four in a complete seven-inning effort.
Dana Bowler (3-4) gave up six hits in six innings to SVSU while walking two and tallying three strikeouts.
Ferris State, which stranded eight runners on base for the game, received a three-of-four hitting performance from Morgan Kramerich. Rhea Flores and junior third baseman Makenzi Peterson (Big Rapids) produced the other two base hits for the Bulldogs with singles.
The Bulldogs continue their current homestand this Friday (April 2) with a conference doubleheader against the Lake Superior State Lakers in Big Rapids. Game one will begin at 3:30 p.m. (EDT) with the second game to follow around 5:30 p.m. (EDT). Community members along with little leagues and high school students from both Big Rapids and Reed City are encouraged to attend as a part of "Community Day".