Softball Drops Its Opening Game At Spartan Classic

Amanda Nguyen tied the school's mark for hits.

Amanda Nguyen tied the school's mark for hits.

Feb. 21, 2014

Box Score

GREENSBORO, N.C. - Right-hander Raeanne Hanks limited Army to just four hits and stranded seven runners, and Nichole Thomas and Tory Wright each drove in a pair of runs as host UNCG posted a 6-1.

win over the Black Knights at the Spartan Classic in Greensboro, N.C., Friday afternoon.

The game was Army's only contest of the day after its first game against George Washington was canceled due to rain.

The Black Knights (0-6) scored first with sophomore third baseman Kasey McCravey's two-out RBI single to right field driving in Alee Rashenskas. The freshman second baseman moved around on a wild pitch and stolen base after drawing the second walk at the start of the inning.

Army had stranded a pair of runners in scoring position without the benefit of a hit in the second inning following a pair of walks and an error. With Bernadette Cardon advancing to third on a throwing error by the catcher and Alyssa Strobehn moving to second on a groundout after drawing walks, Hanks got out safely on an infield popup.

The Spartans (3-5) tied the game 1-1 in the bottom of the third capitalizing on walks with Thomas forcing in the run on the fourth walk of the inning. Reliever Kristen West, who took over from starter Caroline Smith, left bases loaded in recording all three outs.

Wright's leadoff homer in the bottom of the fourth inning snapped the tie, and Thomas' one-out RBI single knocked in the second run as UNCG pulled ahead 3-1. Hanks limited Army to just one hit over the last three frames with Nguyen's leadoff rip in the top of the fourth inning tying the school's all-time mark of 230. The three-time Patriot League all-star, who holds Army record for runs scored and stolen bases, tied Hall of Famer Nicki Robbins' mark on her fifth hit of the season.

Hanks went on to retire six straight batters before issuing back-to-back walks in the top of the seventh that placed runners at second and third, but a lineout, a sacrifice bunt and groundout ended Army's rally.

UNCG built on its lead with three runs in the bottom of the sixth as the Spartans capitalized on three hits and two errors. Thomas doubled in the second run in knocking out West (0-2) with Rachael Dehlinger taking over the circle with no outs and runners at second and third. The Spartans scored an unearned run before Dehlinger ended UNCG's final at bat with bases loaded.

The Black Knights (0-6) face 2013 NCAA Tournament Teams Saturday in Minnesota and Hampton Saturday at 9:30 and 5 p.m., respectively, in their first-ever meetings. Army is the defending Patriot League Tournament Champions who competed last year at the Austin Regional.

NOTE: It is the third time that Army and UNCG have met with the Spartans winning all three games ... Kasey McCravey is in the midst of a 10-game hitting streak that began with the last four games (to include two games at the NCAA Regionals) last year and the first six this season ... she has multiple hits in six of those games (three in 2013 and three in 2014) ... all three Army pitchers in today's game were freshmen.

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