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Dartmouth Softball Splits Games to Close Spring Break Trip

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Britta McOmber     By John and Matt Risley

FORT MYERS, Fla. - The Dartmouth softball team closed its spring break trip to Florida with a dramatic, 7-6, extra inning win over North Texas and a, 4-2, loss to Florida Gulf Coast on Thursday (March 22).  Dartmouth closed its spring break trip with a 6-5 record and two shutouts.

 In a neutral site game against North Texas to open the day, the Big Green went down 5-0, heading into the fourth inning before their bats came alive and sparked a rally that resulted in an extra inning.

Hillary Hubert (Grant Park, Ill.) got things going with a leadoff single to left field before advancing to second base on an illegal pitch.  Britta McOmber (Chatham, N.J.) kept the rally going with a single to left field. Both runners moved on another illegal pitch and Hubert rounded the bases to cut into the Mean Green lead.

Dartmouth (7-6) loaded the bases after the North Texas pitcher hit Megan Averitt (Alameda, Calif.) and a walked the next batter. With a two-RBI double from Kat Hicks (Flemington, N.J.), two more runs came home. Averitt, who moved back into the lineup after Rhiannon Saucedo (Las Cruces, N.M.) pitch hit for her, came home on a wild pitch and an RBI single from Kristen Rumley (Katy, Texas) sent Hicks home and evened the score at 5-5.

North Texas (12-15) regained its lead in the top of the fifth inning on an error but Dartmouth had a response in the bottom of the sixth inning and tied the ballgame at 6-6. With two outs, Kara Curosh (Munster, Ind.) laid down a bunt followed by a single to third base from Hicks and the rally was on. Rumley came up big in the next at bat with a single to left field that scored Curosh and tied the ballgame.

In the top of the eighth, Big Green pitcher Hillary Barker (Duvall, Wash.) shut down the Mean Green batters setting the scene for a Dartmouth victory in the eighth. Katie Adams (Kent, Wash.) opened the extra session with a single to left field. Morgan Wharton (Binghamton, N.Y.), who pinch ran for Adams, moved to second on a ground out and reached third on a error from the catcher and Curosh sealed the win with a RBI bunt to give the Big Green their third straight win.

Hicks went 2-of-2 from the plate to lead the Big Green while Curosh and Rumley both went 2-of-4. There were five RBI on the afternoon with Hicks and Rumley combining for four RBIs. In the circle, Evan Gray (Edmond, Okla.) got the start and in 3.0 innings of work allowed five runs on seven hits with three strikeouts. Rumley picked up her third win with one run on three hits in 5.0 innings of work. She also fanned six batters.

In the late game against Florida Gulf Coast, Dartmouth went down 3-0 after the first four innings of action. After two scoreless innings, the Eagles put two runs on the board in the bottom of the third inning.

The Eagles opened the inning with a single to right field, followed by a single up the middle.  Barker struck out the next batter and the next batter flied out to right field but a triple sent both runners around the bases, putting Florida Gulf Coast ahead, 2-0.

Florida Gulf Coast (20-16) added another run in the bottom of the next inning but the Big Green got one run back in the top of the fifth. Adams opened with a single through the left side to give the Big Green a base runner. After a double play, resulting in two outs, Averitt reached on a fielder's choice but the inning ended with a strikeout.

The Eagles tacked on another run in the sixth and Dartmouth tried to rally in the seventh for the second consecutive game. With one out, Adams singled to left field to get things started. Wharton, who pinch ran for Adams moved to second on a single from Saucedo, Curosh came up big again with a RBI single up the middle, scoring Wharton and moving Averitt to third base. McOmber had a chance to make it a one-run game but struck out leaving Curosh and Averitt stranded.

Noelle Ramirez (Pompton Plains, N.J.) was 2-of-2 from the plate and Curosh was 2-of-3 with an RBI. The Big Green had three players with two hits and had a total of nine hits on the evening.

Barker, Rachel Hein (Olathe, Kan.) and Gray each saw action in the game. Barker took the loss and in three innings of work allowed three runs on five hits with two strikeouts. Hein, who pitched 2.1 innings, allowed one run on four hits while Gray came in to close.

The Big Green will head back to the Northeast but before returning to Hanover, will take on regional foe, Boston College, in doubleheader action in Chestnut Hill, Mass., on Saturday (March 24). First pitch is scheduled for 1 p.m.

Dartmouth vs. North Texas

Dartmouth 7, North Texas 6 (Mar 22, 2012 at Fort Myers, FL)

North Texas               200 310 00 -  6 10  1      (12-15)
Dartmouth                 000 501 01 -  7  9  2      (7-5)

Pitchers: North Texas - Kirk; Thompson(4); Poole(4); Simmons(8) and . Dartmouth - Gray,Evan;Rumley,Kristen(4) and .
Win-Rumley,Kristen(3-2)  Loss-Poole(2-3)  T-2:35  A-50
HR NT - McCarroll (5).

Dartmouth vs. Florida Gulf Coast
FGCU 4, Dartmouth 2 (Mar 22, 2012 at Fort Myers, Fla.)

Dartmouth     000 010 1 -  2  8  1      (7-6)
FGCU               002 101 X -  4  9  1      (20-16)

Pitchers: Dartmouth - Barker,Hillary; Hein,Rachel(4); Gray,Evan(6) and Adams,Katie. FGCU -Morgan, S.; Campen, M.(7) and Zgrabik, C.; Green, L..
Win-Morgan, S.(13-3)  Save-Campen, M.(3)  Loss-Barker,Hillary(2-3)  T-1:56  A-132
Barker faced 2 batters in the 4th.