By Jordan Rinard, Senior Staff Writer
The Miami University softball team split with Butler University at home on Tuesday, picking up a 5-3 victory and a 2-1 loss. The RedHawks (25-20) are 5-5 in games played Monday through Thursday and have dropped five out of their last seven.
"We had a good game in the first game," head coach Clarisa Crowell said. "In the second game, we didn't have a good offense. I'm disappointed with the lack of adjustments at the plate. We didn't hit and we know that we can do better. Our pitching and defense was good, but we have to hit consistently."
Miami struck first in the opening game with a pair of RBIs in the third by senior first baseman Shanyn McIntyre and senior outfielder Bree Lipscomb. In the next innings, junior designated player Tanya Busby notched another pair of RBIs. Another RBI from senior outfielder Tiyona Marshall gave Miami a 5-0 lead.
Butler (22-23) made a late push in the seventh with three runs, but junior pitcher Amber Logemann closed the door on the comeback with a strikeout.
She picked up seven strikeouts in the complete game effort for her 21st win of the season.
Busby went 2-4 with two RBIs and a run scored, while McIntyre and Marshall each had one RBI and one run scored.
In the second game, the Bulldogs struck first with a home run in the third. Lipscomb answered with a solo shot in the fifth to tie it up at 1-1. Butler regained the lead in the seventh with a sac fly RBI. The Red and White had one last chance in the bottom of the inning with a runner on base with two outs, but they couldn't pull through for the win.
Lipscomb and McIntyre had the only hits of the game for the team. The freshman Kelsey Fredericks, senior Remy Edwards and senior Megan Mattera pitching battery had a strong showing with two earned runs on five hits.
"We scored early in the first game, played some good defense, and had our pitching grind it out at the end," Busby said. "In the second game, we needed to score runs and make plate adjustments and try not to do too much. This weekend, we have to be able to hit the ball, not only without runners on but score some runs. We need to relax and come to the plate with a plan."
The RedHawks hit the road Friday for a 1 p.m. doubleheader with the University of Akron. Miami faces Ohio University in a two-game series Saturday and Sunday.
Akron (20-20, 7-6 MAC) has won eight of its last 11 games and is third in the MAC East. The Zips' 3.04 ERA and .963 fielding percentage both rank in the top three in the league. Junior pitcher Erin Seiler leads Akron with 252 strikeouts and a 2.10 ERA.
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Ohio (14-26, 6-6 MAC) has lost four of its last five and finds itself in fourth place in the MAC East. The Bobcats are second in the division with a .283 batting average, but own the worst ERA in the league (6.74) and the third-to-last fielding percentage (.940). Senior pitcher/first baseman Kaylin Clarke hits .360/.477/.447 to lead OU.
"It's a huge weekend for us," Crowell said. "We have to put all three phases together. Ohio had their ace get hurt, but we still need to score runs because they're a good hitting team. Seiler's been a good player for Akron. Kelsey's done a good job as our number two pitcher, now we just have to hit."