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Softball’s MAC Tournament Run Ends With Loss To Miami

   AKRON, Ohio - - The top seeded Ball State softball team saw its run at the 2012 MAC Tournament title come to an end Friday night with a 4-2 loss to No. 2 seed Miami at Firestone Stadium.

   In Friday's loss to the RedHawks (36-18), junior center fielder Amanda Carpenter (Santee, Calif./Santana) led the Ball State (40-15) offense with a pair of hits (a single and double), two walks and she scored one of BSU's two runs.

   Also collecting hits in the game for Ball State were sophomore left fielder Jennifer Gilbert (McKinney, Texas/McKinney), senior designated player/catcher Amanda Montalto (Las Vegas, Nev./Palo Verde) and sophomore third baseman Audrey Bickel (Munster, Ind./Andrean).

  Gilbert and Montalto recorded back-to-back doubles leading to BSU's final run in the bottom of the fifth, while Bickel singled in the bottom of the seventh.

   Senior pitcher Kim Mazzapica (Palm Harbor, Fla./East Lake) turned in another strong outing, allowing just three earned runs and nine hits over seven innings. She also struck out a batter. With the loss, Mazzapica falls to 23-4 on the season, with her .852 winning percentage being the second-best in Mid-American Conference single-season history.

   Miami opened the scoring in the top of the fourth thanks to a RBI single from Kayla Ledbetter and a Casey Drees sacrifice fly.

   Ball State retaliated with a run in the bottom of the frame, thanks to a one-out double from Carpenter who came around to score on a Miami error later in the inning.

   The Cardinals tied the score in the bottom of the fifth thanks to the back-to-back doubles from Gilbert and Montalto.

   Unfortunately, Miami would push the eventual winning runs across the plate in the top of the sixth thanks to a two-run pinch hit double from Megan Mattera.

   Ball State would load the bases with two outs in the bottom of the seventh, but could not capitalize as RedHawks' pitcher Jessica Simpson struck out the game's final batter. In picking up her league-leading 28th win of the season, Simpson limited the Cardinals to two runs (one earned) on five hits.

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