BETHLETHEM, Pa.- Juniata softball took the field for its first Landmark Tournament game in four years on Saturday morning against host Moravian. The Eagles had an early 1-0 lead but the Greyhounds came back to score five times in the bottom of third to take a lead they would not relinquish as Moravian won 9-1 in five innings.
The loss puts JC in the first elimination game at 4:30 p.m. today. Juniata will play Susquehanna which lost to Catholic 8-2.
After a scoreless first inning, the Eagles got on board in the second. After Jordan Wahrenberger (Shamong, NJ/Seneca) popped up to second base to lead off, Abby Ebright (Harrisburg, Pa./Central Dauphin East) singled to shortstop. Molly Ulrich's (Homer, NY/Homer Central) groundout moved Ebright to second. Chrisi Lerchen (Annville, Pa./Annville-Cleona) came up and laced an 0-1 pitch to right center to score Ebright and give Juniata a 1-0 lead.
Starting pitcher Anna Baran (Tyrone, Pa./Tyrone) was able to keep the Greyhounds in check in the bottom half of the second. After walking Janae Matos, Lauren Goetz was out on a sacrifice bunt to move Matos to second. Jean Markovic fouled out and Kaela Kane lined out to end the inning.
Juniata went down 1-2-3 in the top of the third. Baran ran into trouble as she walked Madison Shaneberger and then gave up a two-run homerun to Julie Siragusa off the right field foul pole as Moravian went ahead 2-1. Later, Matos' two-run double increased the Greyhound lead to 4-1 and Markovic's RBI double made it 5-1.
The Eagles attempted to rally in the fifth. With two outs, Jennifer Carthew (New Paris, Pa./Chestnut Ridge) singled through the left side and Brooke Ridenour (Thurmont, Md./Catoctin) followed her with a single to second base. The rally ended as Allie Baney (State College, Pa./State College) hit into a fielder's choice and Carhtew was out at third. Siragusa's two-run double in the bottom portion of the inning ended the game.
Baran pitched 3.2 innings and gave up seven runs on nine hits. She walked two. Lerchen came in relief and surrendered two runs on two hits.