Big Rapids, Mich. - The Ferris State University softball team dropped its final two games in the Sunshine State on Friday (March 15) as the Bulldogs suffered a pair of defeats at the Florida Rebel Spring Games in Kissimmee, Fla.
The back-to-back defeats represented the first time over the seven-day event in which the Bulldogs dropped a pair of games on a single day. FSU fell to fellow Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) counterpart Tiffin (Ohio) by a 5-3 count in the opener before losing to Southwest Minnesota State for the second time in the tournament in the final game via a 5-2 decision.
Ferris State wrapped up 12 games over a seven-day period in Florida with a 7-5 overall record, which marks one of the Bulldogs' best showings in the event during recent history. FSU had started the trip by winning six of its first seven outings before falling in four of the last five contets.
In Friday's opening game, Tiffin managed to score four runs in the bottom of the second and added a single run in the sixth after FSU had trimmed the margin to 4-3 by scoring twice in the fifth. The Bulldogs count not score, however, over the final two innings in the setback.
FSU had only two hits in the contest, which included a triple from senior outfielder Morgan Kramerich along with a solo hit from Alyssa Smith. The Bulldogs left four runners stranded in the game.
Junior Amy Dunleavy hurled six innings for the Bulldogs in the circle and allowed five runs on six hits with a single strikeout and three walks at Oren Brown Park.
In the nightcap, the Bulldogs surrendered four runs in the first and a single run in the second as Southwest Minnesota State bolted out to a 5-0 lead in the second matchup between the two schools in Florida. FSU cut the deficit to 5-2 in the bottom of the second, but neither team could muster any runs the rest of the way.
Senior pitcher Dana Bowler tossed all seven innings for the Bulldogs and allowed five runs on nine hits. She struck out eight and walked three in the complete game performance.
Ferris State totaled eight hits in game two, but allowed nine to the Mustangs. FSU's hits included three from Rachel Gabrielson along with solo hits each by outfielder Alyssa Smith, senior Lindsey Pettit along with leftfielder Alex Wittman, designated player Jordan Maxwell and catcher Taylor Verbic.
The hits included doulbes from Smith, Wittman, Verbic and two by Gabrielson.
The Bulldogs return home and will have a week off before opening GLIAC play on the road at Ashland and Malone with doubleheaders on Saturday and Sunday, March 23-24, respectively.