Big Rapids, Mich. - The Ferris State University women's softball team battled one of the region's top teams to the wire, but suffered a pair of close setbacks in Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) play at home on Sunday (April 15).
The Bulldogs fell to Ashland by scores of 7-4 in the opener and 5-4 in the nightcap in a twinbill delayed by 90 minutes to due morning rain. The doubleheader wrapped up a six-game weekend homestand for the Bulldogs.
Ashland entered the week ranked second in the NCAA-II Midwest Regional rankings along with being listed among teams receiving votes in the national poll. They improved to 34-12 overall and 18-8 in the GLIAC with the sweep while FSU fell to 21-21 overall and 12-12 in conference action.
The Eagles scored three runs in the fourth and added four more in the seventh to take game one. AU pounded out 13 hits in the contest to eight for the Bulldogs in the opener. Emlyn Knerem tossed all seven innings for the Eagles and struck out eight FSU batters with no walks.
The Bulldogs received a home run from Amy Dunleavy with Morgan Kramerich contributing her fourth double of the season. She also drove in two runs while senior Makenzi Peterson posted a pair of hits. Dana Bowler threw the initial six and two-third innings with five strikeouts and five walks.
The Eagles built a 5-2 edge after five innings in the second game before the Bulldogs trimmed the margin to a single run with two across the plate in the top of the sixth. Then, in the seventh, the Bulldogs put two runners on base in their final at-bat, but could not come up with the tying run.
Dunleavy threw the first four and one-third innings for the Bulldogs while giving up nine hits and four runs. She had four strikeouts before Bowler pitched in relief and struck out two in the final one and two-thirds innings.
Meanwhile, Amber McDermott pitched all seven innings of the second game for the Eagles and struck out four while walking three. The Bulldogs totaled 10 hits compared to 11 for the Eagles.
Offensively, the Bulldogs received three hits from shortstop Michelle Tononi in game two while both Liz Hamming and Stephanie Dusendang posted two hits each. Kramerich knocked in a pair of runs off her second double of the day. Hamming and Tononi also doubled.
FSU left 10 runners on base in game two.
The Bulldogs will hit the road on Wednesday (April 18) for a league doubleheader in Midland against the Northwood Timberwolves starting at 3:30 p.m. (ET). FSU then returns home for its final weekend home series on Friday and Saturday (April 20-21) with a four-game set versus Saginaw Valley State.