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Lady Lions Lose Heartbreaker to Ithaca in NCAA Opener
5/9/2014 — ITHACA, N.Y. - Penn State Altoona softball lost 2-1 on a walkoff single by Ithaca College on Friday afternoon in the Lady Lions' first game of the NCAA Division III Regional Tournament at Ithaca's Kostrinsky Field.
Penn State Altoona, the fourth seed in the four-team Ithaca Region, will play third-seeded SUNY Oneonta tomorrow, Saturday, May 10 in a losers' bracket game at 1:30 PM. The winner of that contest will face either Ithaca or Rowan University at 3:00 PM.
Kelly Chambers (Snow Shoe, PA/Bald Eagle) and Lily Glunt (Snow Shoe, PA/Bald Eagle) each went 1-for-3 with a double in Friday's loss.
Ala Miller (Muncy, PA/Muncy) was 1-for-2 with her team's lone RBI.
Raychel DeArmitt (Bellefonte, PA/Bellefonte) took the tough-luck loss, going 6 2/3 innings and surrendering two runs while striking out three.
Penn State Altoona broke through for the first run of the game in the top of the second inning on Miller's two-out RBI single to left.
Ithaca answered in the bottom of the third inning with a run-scoring, two-out hit of their own when Casey Gavin's double to right-center tied the score 1-1.
The game settled into a pitchers' duel between DeArmitt and Ithaca starter Sam Bender, as the score remained the same until the bottom of the seventh.
The Lady Lions appeared to have an opportunity to take the lead in the sixth after Chambers' leadoff double. But, with one out, Ithaca threw the potential go-ahead run out at home plate, then tagged out another runner at second to end the inning.
The Bombers capitalized on a scoring opportunity in the bottom of the seventh. Nicole Ciricillo and Kate Brainard's back-to-back bloop singles put two runners on with one out. After a sacrifice bunt moved both runners up, Francesca Busa's two-out hit to left handed Ithaca the walkoff win.
The Lady Lions, now 29-10 overall, will seek their first-ever NCAA postseason win tomorrow against SUNY Oneonta, which lost 7-0 to second-seeded Rowan to open the tournament on Friday.
Photo: Penn State Altoona sophomore outfielder Gina Ricci slides safely into home in the top of the second inning to give the Lady Lions a 1-0 lead against Ithaca on Friday.