BOCA RATON, Fla. - - Led by a 3-for-3 effort from junior left fielder Jennifer Gilbert, the Ball State (10-8) softball team opened the second day of the FAU Invitational with a 5-2 victory over Stony Brook (6-11) Friday afternoon at the Florida Atlantic Softball Stadium.
The Cardinals return to action later this afternoon with a schedule 4 p.m. first pitch versus Florida A&M.
Gilbert, who collected her 40th career home run in the bottom of the sixth, also posted two singles and a sacrifice fly in the game, while finishing with three RBI and two runs scored.
Freshman shortstop Selena Reyna added a double, marking the 16th-straight game Ball State has tallied at least one double this season.
Nicole Steinbach turned in another strong showing in the circle for the Cardinals, improving to 4-5 on the season by limiting the Seawolves to seven hits and two runs (one earned) over seven innings of work. She would strikeout six batters in the contest, while issuing just one walk.
Stony Brook opened the scoring in the top of the first thanks to a leadoff single from Shayla Giosia and a two-out RBI single from Jessica Zeilman.
The Cardinals broke onto the scoreboard in the top of the third, with a three-run rally sparked by a leadoff single from Cihlar. With runners at first and third after sophomore right fielder Hanne Stuedemann reached on an error, Gilbert would drive in the Cardinals' first run with a single up the middle.
A two-out walk to junior first baseman Taylor Rager would load the bases two batters later, setting up a two-run single up the middle from Carpenter.
After retiring the Stony Brook side in order in the top of the fourth, Ball State extended its lead to 4-1 in the bottom of the inning on a Gilbert sacrifice fly which drove in Cihlar who singled to reach base.
The Seawolves cut the Ball State lead to two runs in the top of the fifth thanks to a one-out RBI single from Olivia Mintun which left runners at first and second. However, Steinbach would work her way out of the jam with back-to-back strikeouts to end the inning.
Gilbert scored the game's final run with a two-out solo shot to left field.
SBU's Christine Lucido suffered her first loss of the season in the circle for the Seawolves, falling to 4-1 after surrendering seven hits and four runs (two earned) over 3.1 innings.