FIU Softball Season Officially Underway with Two Invitationals in the Books

The FIU Softball team strategizing their next move. Photo by FIU Athletics

Paula Silva / Staff Writer

The FIU Softball Team is in full swing as they have already competed in two series including the Felsberg Invitational and the Panther Invitational this season.

Felsburg Invitational

In the first game of the season against the UNC Greensboro Spartans got the first lead of the game on a solo home run from right fielder Blayke Batten in the top of the fourth. 

The Panthers were quick to catch up as in the bottom of the fifth catcher Carmen Perez doubled down the line and recorded the first run for FIU, making it 1-1.  

Later in the inning Pere stole home on a error, giving the Panthers a 2-1 lead.

Next up when outfielder Madison Lewis doubled to right center, and infielders Venessa Gallegos, Jianna Simonet came home on a two-run double, making 4-3 FIU.

On the top of the seventh, the Spartans managed to score two more runs, but it wasn’t enough to claim victory. FIU beat the UNCG Spartans 4-3. 

In the Friday night matchup, the Panthers took on the Maryland Terrapins, and saw the Terrapins put four runs on the board in the top of the first. Eventually, the Panthers could not catch up and lost by a score of 10-2.

Later in the series, the Panther lost both of their games to the Tennessee Lady Volunteers. The first game resulted in a 4-3 loss. FIU got on the board first with an RBI single from outfielder Bailey Grossenbacher that brought home Gallegos.

Infielder Gaby Ruiz  extended the inning with a two run single that scored Lewis and Grossenbacher, making it 4-3 Panthers. 

However, the ranked Lady Volunteers showed why they are one of the top teams in the nations, plating home four runs in the next six innings, getting the 4-3 win.. 

During the nightcap between FIU and the Lady Volunteers, the game remained scoreless through the first three innings before the Lady Vols got two runs in the bottom of the fourth, followed by another run in the fifth, and four more in the sixth. 

FIU’s outfielder, Brooke McAnn scored the only run for her team in the top of the seventh, making the game result 7-1.

The games that were taking place on Sunday had to be canceled due to weather conditions. 

After a pair of losses against Tennessee, the Panthers finished the tournament with a 1-3 overall result. 

Second Weekend

The Panthers received the first game of the weekend by scoring a victory against the University of Buffalo on Friday, February 18. The Florida team walked off with a 4-3 win at the Panther Invitational.

The players that brought FIU this victory by completing runs were centerfielder Madison Lewis, left fielder Alexis Ross, catcher Carmen Perez, and second base Venessa Gallegos

Ross scored in the bottom of the seventh to make her team secure a win, making the game end with a 4-3 result. 

Pitcher Kendahl Dunford tossed 6.0 innings, and allowed only three runs.

 The nightcap took a turn as the Panthers dropped the game losing to the Penn State Nittany Lions by a score of 7-0. 

However, during the Saturday games, the Panthers picked up their performance and beat Cleveland State 6-5..

Key contributors for the Panthers included Lewis who had two hits on the afternoon with a RBI and designated hitter Hanna Johanning, who had a key RBI double and groundout to help FIU get the win. 

The FIU Softball team kept the focus for the weekend, when during the nightcap they beat Buffalo 6-0. The game was interrupted by rain on top of the fifth, and had to be continued the following day at 9 a.m. 

The Panthers picked up their pace on Sunday morning when they had to resume their game against Buffalo, scoring one more run in the fifth, while their opponents were able to score a single run. The game resulted in a 7-1 Panthers win.

The FIU Softball team dropped their score on their game against Penn State on Sunday when they lost 10-0. 

FIU will continue their homestand with a mid-week matchup against the University of Central Florida Knights on Wednesday, February 24th at 2 p.m.

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