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LA Tech drops MT 7-5, 1-0

Dukes goes 6-for-6 with two RBI

March 22, 2014 · @MTAthletics

MURFREESBORO, Tenn. - The Middle Tennessee softball team (6-25, 1-7 C-USA) opened its three-game series with Louisiana Tech (11-19, 2-6 C-USA) with two losses, dropping its games Saturday by scores of 7-5 and 1-0, respectively.

Laura Dukes finished the games perfect at the plate, going 6-for-6 with two RBI and one walk. LaRi Mitchell went 2-for-4 in game one with three runs, while Nina Dever added two RBI on 2-for-4 hitting and McKena Miller finished 2-for-3. In the second contest of the day, Samantha Nieves notched one of the team's four hits with Dukes accounting for the other three.

All three pitchers saw action Saturday, with Caitlin McClure pitching the seven-inning complete game in game two. McClure (2-6) allowed five hits and a run in the fourth inning to the Lady Techsters, which proved to be the deciding margin of victory. Jordyn Fisherback (3-9) started the first game and tossed 4.2 innings, while surrendering seven hits with five runs and one strike out. Stinnett closed the final 2.1 innings and allowed two earned runs.

In the first contest between the C-USA foes, the Blue Raiders fell behind early with LA Tech gaining a 2-0 advantage over MT in the top of the first. The Blue Raiders notched their first runs of the game in the third inning on a double by Dever to right field, which scored Miller and Mitchell.

After LA Tech put three more runs on the board to Middle Tennessee's one, each side went scoreless in the sixth. The Lady Techsters added two more runs in the top of the seventh to extend their lead to 7-3. 

With runners on the corners and one out, Kayla Toney lifted a fly ball just deep enough to plate Miller from third. One batter later, Dukes singled to left center for MT's second run of the inning and two batters later Middle Tennessee was handed its first loss of the day.

In the second game neither time found its offensive rhythm with LA Tech leaving six runners on base and Middle Tennessee leaving eight.

The Blue Raiders had their best scoring chance in the sixth inning. Dukes started the inning with a double to right center and then Dever reached after being hit by a pitch. Freshman Austyn Whaley laid down a bunt to advance both runners. Two pop ups to center field and left field ended the Middle Tennessee threat.

Middle Tennessee and LA Tech conclude the three-game series tomorrow with the first pitch scheduled for noon.

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