Melanie Murphy – Photo credit: Cindy Rieber

The Florida Tech Panthers earned a split of a doubleheader against Barry on Saturday, highlighted by a one-hitter by Panthers ace Melanie Murphy. The only Buccaneers hit came in the second inning, a single by Maddy VonHagel. With that, the Panthers took game two 3-0, but were not as lucky in game one, as Barry got off to a fast start and grabbed a 9-4 victory.

Amanda Kahn got the start in the circle for FIT and ran into trouble right out of the gate in game one. Peyton Rawls singled and one out later, Anieliese Palmeiro doubled, putting runners at second and third. VonHagel chased them home with a double, making it 2-0 and got to take a slower tour of the bases when Geneva Santos hit a two-run homer, giving the Bucs a 4-0 lead.

That was the end of the day for Kahn, who was relieved by McKenzie Krutsinger, who got the last two outs of the inning. Kahn (3-4) lasted only 1/3 of an inning and gave up four runs on four hits.

Barry added to their lead in the bottom of the third. An infield single by Santos loaded the bases and a wild pitch scored Alayna Gallagher. Kristina Osorio was next up and she hit a seemingly easy fly ball that just kept carrying and went over the wall, giving the home team an 8-0 lead.

Gallagher’s RBI groundout in the fourth made it 9-0 and the Buccaneers looked poised to put this one away with the run-rule. The Panthers weren’t having it. With one out in the fifth, Shanysse Emerenciana hit a solo blast off of Bucs’ starter Christie Falcon. Xiarysse Emerenciana then reached on an error and came home on an RBI single by Mikayla Wessel, making it 9-2.

Florida Tech continued to fight in the top of the sixth. Vanessa Rubio singled with one down and Lexi Bettermann was called on to pinch run. One out later, Alexus Smith hit a ball that seemed to cross-up the outfielders. It was scored a triple and it was 9-3. An RBI single by Shanysse Emerenciana made it 9-4.

That was as close as the Panthers would get as Falcon (9-5) went the distance. She gave up four runs on eight hits, only one of the runs were earned. Krutsinger pitched 5.2 innings in relief, allowing five runs (four earned) on five hits. She walked a batter and threw 59 pitches (45 strikes).

For more info: Florida Tech @ Barry Box Score (Game 1)

Game two was all about Murphy. She mowed down the Bucs lineup with ease, throwing just 68 pitches, 50 for strikes. She walked one and struck out three, facing just one batter over the minimum.

Offensively, the Panthers had seven hits in the game and got the scoring started in the third. Wessel laid down a bunt single and stole second. After Carver walked, both runners moved up on a wild pitch by Geneva Santos. Jessica Callahan walked to load the bases and Palmer hit a sac fly to make it 1-0.

Florida Tech (19-14, 5-7 SSC) added to the lead in the top of the fourth. Victoria Szrom doubled and later scored on a Xiarysse Emerenciana single that was trapped in right and got Szrom home with the second run.

Falcon came in to pitch the sixth inning and she got the first two outs of the frame, before Smith homered, giving the Panthers their 3-0 advantage.

For more info: Florida Tech @ Barry Box Score (Game 2)

Friday night’s 12-2 victory, coupled with their game two win on Saturday gives the Panthers a Sunshine State Conference series win. They will return home Tuesday to host the Columbus State Cougars in a non-conference doubleheader. Game one will start at 1:00 p.m.

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