NEWARK, Del. – The Elon University softball team dropped a couple of games today, May 4, at Delaware in a Colonial Athletic Association doubleheader. The Phoenix fell to the Blue Hens in game one, 3-1, before suffering a 9-4 setback in the nightcap at the Delaware Softball Diamond.
The losses bring the Phoenix (24-27, 7-13 CAA) a step closer from missing the league tournament for the second straight year to the Blue Hens. Delaware improved to 17-31 overall while becoming even with the Phoenix in the standings at 7-13. The losses also snapped a four-game winning streak for the Phoenix.
Game One: Delaware 3, Elon 1
The Phoenix racked up twice as many hits in the game versus Blue Hens in the opener, 10-5, but could not find many clutch hits to take the game over. Elon scored the first run of the game early in the opening frame as Ashtyn Foddrell drove a single into right field to score Hannah Olson, who reached earlier on a single. The Phoenix took a 1-0 lead after the top half of the first.
After scoreless second and third frames, the Blue Hens knotted the score at one-all in their home half of the fourth. A two-out RBI single up the middle helped Delaware tie the game at 1-1 as the contest moved to the fifth.
The Blue Hens added two more runs in the bottom of the fifth to take the lead. A fielding miscue by the Phoenix led to Delaware plating the go-ahead run with runners on second and third and two outs. That was followed by a RBI single to tack on an insurance run for the Blue Hens who left the fifth with a 3-1 advantage.
The Phoenix was held to one hit combined in the sixth and seventh innings to fall to Delaware in the opening game, 3-1.
Game Two: Delaware 9, Elon 4
In the second game, Delaware came out on top early with a run in the bottom of the first. A couple of Phoenix miscues aided a run crossing the dish for the Blue Hens with one out as Elon fell behind early, 1-0.
A two-out RBI triple added another run for the Blue Hens in the bottom of the third. A three-bagger down the left field line scored a Delaware runner as the Phoenix faced a 2-0 deficit going to the fourth.
After Delaware plated another run in the fourth, the Phoenix answered with a four-spot in the top of the fifth. Tia Mitchell led off with a bunt single before eventually scoring Elon’s first run of the day on a Kristin Hoover one-out RBI double to left center. Back-to-back singles loaded the bases with only one out for the Phoenix before Olson cleared them with a double down the left field line to help the Phoenix take a 4-3 lead.
The momentum for the Phoenix was short-lived as Delaware answered with a three-spot in the bottom of the fifth to retake the lead, 6-4. The Blue Hens tacked on three more runs in the bottom of the sixth to put the game out of reach for the Phoenix who fell in the second game, 9-4.
Elon and Delaware will play in a winner-take-all series finale tomorrow, May 5, with the victor earning a spot for the CAA Tournament. Opening pitch for that game is at noon.