Sabres suffer setback to open NACC play

MILWAUKEE - Marian University softball (12-4, 0-2 NACC) struggled to string hits together as they fell to MSOE 5-1 and 4-3 in nine innings to open NACC play.

In the opener, the Sabre offense struggled to find a rhythm as they would only manage six hits to plate one run.  The Raiders opened the scoring in the bottom of the second but the Sabres answered shortly after.  With runners on first and third in the top of the fourth, freshman Gianna Esposito would get caught in a run down long enough for senior Sara Terrian to cross the plate and tie the game at 1-1.

MSOE responded with three runs in the bottom of the fifth and tacked on another unearned run in the bottom of the sixth to set the final at 5-1.

Esposito would be the lone Sabre to reach multiple times going 2-3 in the loss.  Senior Shannon Huray took the loss allowing three earned runs over 6.0 innings.

The Sabres bounced back to open game two with senior Nicole LaBeck driving in Terrian with a single in the top of the second to put Marian on the board first.

Sophomore Lindsey Strainis double to left field to bring in freshman Ally Fox in the top of the fifth to add some cushion before Esposito brought in Strainis to put MU ahead 3-0.

Freshman Paige Rauhut cruised through the first six innings in the circle for MU but the Raiders were able to mount a comeback plating three runs in the bottom of the seventh to force extras.

MSOE would complete their comeback in the bottom of the ninth with an RBI single to walkoff the Sabres by a 4-3 final.

Strainis and Fox combined for six of the nine Sabre hits in game two with Fox going 4-5 with a run scored.  Rauhut finished allowing three runs over 6.1 innings with eight strikeouts, while Huray (6-4) took the loss.

Marian looks to bounce back tomorrow, Sunday, April 2, when the Sabres host Rockford for a 2 p.m. doubleheader in NACC action.