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Eastern Florida Earns Softball Split Against St. Johns River

March 2, 2014 - Eastern Florida's softball team earned a doubleheader split with visiting St. Johns River State College on Sunday, dropping the first game 10-5 but winning the second 9-4 on the Palm Bay Campus.

Eastern Florida is now 10-12 on the season and St. Johns River 9-7.

In the second game Eastern Florida broke a 4-4 tie with five runs in the bottom of the sixth inning on six St. Johns River errors. The ball never left the infield until the final out but sloppy defense and alert base running gave the Titans the runs they needed.

Freshman Dajia Jones got the win, scattering nine St. Johns River hits.

Freshman Sara Vicente drove in two runs with a two-out single to give Eastern Florida a 3-2 lead in the fourth inning.

St. Johns River loaded the bases with two singles and an intentional walk in the fifth but Jones shut down the Vikings.

Jones then helped herself in the bottom of the fifth driving in sophomore Brooke Formby with a sharp single off the glove of St. Johns River shortstop Nicole Brock for a 4-2 lead. Formby had three hits in her first three at bats and also scored a first-inning run.

Jones finished with two hits.

St. Johns River tied the game at 4-4 in the sixth on an Eastern Florida error and three singles.

In the first game Eastern Florida rallied from a 4-1 third-inning deficit to lead 5-4 by plating four runs in its half of the third. But sophomore Chelsey Bardoff relieved St. Johns River sophomore starter Taylor Surrento to both snuff out the rally and keep the Titans at bay as the Vikings built a 9-5 lead.

Eastern Florida did load the bases with nobody out in the sixth but Bardoff induced successive groundouts for a pitcher-catcher-first-base double play and a force at first to escape unscathed.

The Titans also loaded the bases in the seventh inning, this time with two outs, but could not score.

The Titans collected eight hits with losing pitcher sophomore Brooke Formby, sophomore Manya Lopez and freshman Shelby Nazworth getting two apiece.

Freshman catcher Jennifer Valle was the hitting star for the Vikings going 4-for-4 with three singles and a double and four runs batted in.

The Vikings collected 14 hits and took advantage of three Eastern Florida errors, two of which came with two outs in the fourth inning and led to three St. Johns River runs.

St. Johns River committed two errors.

Formby finished the doubleheader with five hits including a triple.

"We take them however we get them," Eastern Florida assistant coach Bob Yanczewski said of the split. "We're two weeks away from conference and we're still going win one, lose one. We want to make sure when we're losing we're playing a good game.

"And that wasn't a good game that first game. We gave it away. But we fought back. They continue to fight, just like in the second game. We fought, we were down, we fought. We got down, we tied it, we took the lead.

"When we play a complete inning or a complete two innings and our pitcher is there, nobody gets anything, not a thing.

"We'll continue on working, working, working. We've still got a few kinks to work out, we'll work those kinks out and we'll be fine."

Next up for Eastern Florida is a Wednesday doubleheader at Daytona State College with games at 4 and 6 p.m.

The Titans next home appearance is Saturday, March 15 as they open Florida College System Activities Association Southern Conference play against Palm Beach State. Games are at 1 and 3 p.m. and admission is free.