Denver – The top-seeded LIU Post softball team dropped its opening game at the NCAA Division II Softball Championship 9-4 to No. 8 seed Young Harris College Thursday afternoon at the Regency Athletic Complex on the campus of the Metropolitan State University of Denver.
Despite the loss, senior Ashley Melendez had an impressive day for the Pioneers as she went 3-for-4 with two doubles and an RBI. Junior Abbey Fortin hit her 14th home run of the season and junior Megan Sneeden added one hit, one RBI and one run scored. Junior Allie Laird had one hit and drew one walk while senior Leah Mele and sophomore Breanna Klaiber both recorded one hit.
The Mountain Lions scored the opening run of the contest in the top of the first and while Laird drew a walk in the bottom of the first, the Pioneers were unable to put a run on the scoreboard.
Young Harris took a 2-0 lead in the top of the second but LIU Post struck back in the bottom of the inning as Fortin blasted a homer to center field.
The Pioneers then jumped ahead 3-2 in the bottom of the third after Melendez ripped an RBI single to right center, driving senior Julia Seader in then sophomore Hanna Finkelstein would score on an error.
Young Harris retook the lead for a 4-3 advantage in the top of the fourth. Sneeden drew a walk in the bottom of the fourth then Mele singled to left field, but LIU Post would leave two runners stranded on base to end the inning. The Mountain Lions would score another three runs in the top of the fifth then add another two in the top of the sixth for a 9-3 advantage.
In the bottom of the sixth Sneeden led off with a double down the left field line then advanced to third on a passed ball. She then scored to make it a 9-4 game after a sacrifice fly to right field by sophomore Patricia Dun.
Neither team would add any further runs and the contest would end with a 9-4 final score.
As the loss moved the Pioneers into the loser's bracket, the Pioneers will play at 6:00 p.m. (ET) tomorrow at the Regency Athletic Complex against the loser of fourth-seeded Texas A&M-Kingsville and fifth-seeded Grand Valley State University.
Provided by the LIU Post Sports Information Department.