LOUISVILLE - The Miami University softball team opened play at the Red and Black Tournament with a pair of close defeats on Friday. The RedHawks dropped a 4-3 contest to Austin Peay in eight innings in the opener. Miami then fell to 13th-ranked Michigan, 2-0, in the nightcap. The RedHawks are now 2-10 on the season.
The RedHawks struck first in the opener against Austin Peay (6-3) with two runs in the bottom of the second. Allie Larrabee led off with a single through the right side. After the Governors recorded a pair of outs, Kylie McChesney singled to right field to move Larrabee up to third. McChesney then stole second. On the attempt to toss her out, the catcher's throw sailed into center field, allowing Larrabee to come home and score. McChesney then made it 2-0 when an error on a Remy Edwards ground ball allowed her to score.
Paige Myers kept the Governors hitless until the top of the fourth when a double, followed by a single scored a run. In the bottom of the frame, Taylor Shuey led off with a bunt single and stole second. Two batters later, Edwards singled her home to make it 3-1.
With the bases loaded in the top of the fifth, an error allowed Austin Peay to score two runs and tie the score at three. Miami had a chance to win the bottom of the seventh when it got two runners on with one out, but the 'Hawks were unable to bring the winning run home.
Playing the international tiebreaker rule in the eighth inning, the RedHawks were able to get the Governors' placed runner out at home on a ground ball. Austin Peay was able to score a run later in the inning however, to take a 4-3 lead.
In the bottom of the eighth, Megan Mattera was placed on second base. Taylor Shuey was safe on a bunt attempt and then stole second to give Mimai runners at second and third with no one out. After a groundout, Edwards drove a ball to centerfield that was caught. Mattera attempted to score on the sacrifice, but the centerfielder made a great throw to get her out at home and give Austin Peay the victory.
Tiyona Marshall had a strong game for the 'Hawks in the opener, finishing 3-for-4. Shuey was 2-for-3 with one run scored. Myers allowed one earned run on five hits in 4.1 innings. She struck out nine.
Facing the 13th-ranked team in the country in the nightcap, Mattera was up for challenge the strong Michigan (16-5) offense would bring. The sophomore allowed only four hits in six innings pitched. She allowed a single earned run in the bottom of the first inning. The Wolverines would get their other run in the bottom of the fourth off an error by Miami on a stolen base attempt.
Against the reigning Big Ten Pitcher of the Year Hailey Wagner, the RedHawks were able to manage only two hits. Their best chance to score came in the first inning when Kayla Ledbetter walked and advanced to second base on a groundout. It was the only runner Miami was able to put in scoring position.
The RedHawks will face another challenge on Saturday when they face host, 14th-ranked Louisville at 2:30 p.m.