Lady Mocs rally to tie game in seventh but close out season with 5-3 loss to Florida State in extra innings
Photo Courtesy of Jeff Hurndon Michelle Fuzzard belts the game-tying two-run home run with two outs in the bottom of the seventh inning against Florida State
Courtesy: GoMocs.com

Florida State vs. Chattanooga - Box Score

 

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. - Freshman pitcher Kandice Irwin (Knoxville, Tenn.) struck out a career-high tying nine batters and freshman first baseman Michelle Fuzzard (Huntington Beach, Calif.) hit a game-tying two-out, two-run home run in the seventh inning as Chattanooga (41-22) fell 5-3 in extra innings to Florida State (38-27) in the NCAA’s Tuscaloosa Regional on Friday evening.

 

After a scoreless first inning, the Seminoles broke through in the top of the second inning with a leadoff walk, hit by pitch, sacrifice bunt and a bunt single from junior infielder Michelle Snyder to make it 1-0. FSU notched a second run in the top of the third inning to push the lead to 2-0 with a pair of singles and a steal. The score would stay that way for most of the game.

 

After mounting several rallies and trailing 2-0 for the majority of the game, the Lady Mocs were down to their last out with none on and freshman outfielder Lauren Flores (Fort Oglethorpe, Ga.) at the plate. With a full count, Flores drew a walk on a close pitch to bring the tying run to the plate in the form of Michelle Fuzzard.

 

With the count even at 1-1, Fuzzard lifted a long fly ball to deep centerfield where it bounced onto the top of, and over, the outfield fence for a game-tying two-out, two-run home run. It would be a short lived celebration however, as the Seminoles charged right back in the top of the eighth inning.

 

FSU wasted little time, lining four straight singles to lead off the inning and take a 5-2 lead after only four batters. A line out and a pair of strikeouts followed the barrage but the damage was done.

 

In the home half of the eighth, redshirt-freshman second baseman Tiffany Baker (East Ridge, Tenn.) gave the Lady Mocs a glimmer of hope as she pounded the first pitch she saw down the left field line and over the fence for her sixth long ball of the year to narrow the gap to 5-3.

 

That would be all that Chattanooga would get, however, as a strikeout and a pair of groundouts sealed the Lady Mocs fate and closed out a remarkable season.

 

Senior Tiffany McDonald was dominant for most of the game as she struck out 17 batters and took a five-hit shutout into the bottom of the seventh inning to pick up the win and move to 18-11. Kandice Irwin pitched five innings of relief, striking out a career-high tying nine batters, while walking only one, to take the loss and fall to 9-9.

 

Offensively for Chattanooga, Baker went 2-for-3 with a home run and an RBI while Fuzzard posted two RBIs with her dramatic sixth home run of the year. Seniors Tara Tembey (Folsom, Calif.) and Ashlan Clarkson (Chickamauga, Ga.) each added a hit in their final collegiate appearance.

 

The Lady Mocs close out the 2008 campaign with a 41-22 overall record, a pair of championships and a number of tremendous accomplishments in a very special season.

 

NOTES

UTC is now 0-8 against Florida State but has never lost to the Seminoles by more than three runs...Chattanooga finishes the 2008 season with the distinction of being 27-0 when leading after five innings and 31-0 when leading after six innings...this is made even more impressive when consideration is given to the fact that the Lady Mocs did not play a game less than seven innings for a stretch of 44 games dating from February 22 May 10 when they “run-ruled” Georgia Southern 10-1 in the Championship Game of the Southern Conference Tournament.

 

 

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