Butler Gets Off To Strong Start In Florida

Butler Gets Off To Strong Start In Florida

ORLANDO, FLA. -- Butler turned some timely hitting and a couple of strong pitching performances into a pair of victories on the first day of the Rebel Games in Orlando, Fla.  Butler opened the Florida trip with a 3-1 victory over Colgate and then came back with a 3-2, extra-innings win over Manhattan.

Senior Jennifer Chasteen led Butler to a strong start on the spring trip with a complete-game pitching performance against Colgate.  She allowed just one unearned run on six hits, while striking out five.  The Butler righthander has not allowed an earned run in 19.2 innings this season.

The Bulldogs broke a 1-1 tie in the game in the bottom of the sixth inning.  Junior Lauren McNulty opened the inning with a double to left-center field and then scored the eventual winning run on a double by junior Erin Falkenberry.  A sacrifice bunt by junior Jessica Huey and a passed ball plated Falkenberry.

Butler (4-5) and Manhattan went to the international tie-breaker in the eighth inning to decide a game that was tied at 2-2 after seven innings.  Sophomore Kayla Gray began the inning on second base and advanced to third on a sacrifice bunt by McNulty.  Falkenberry then drove in the winning run with a sacrifice fly.

Starting pitcher Jenny Esparza, who was removed in the fourth inning, returned in the seventh frame and recorded six consecutive strikeouts to pick up the victory.  Esparza had 12 strikeouts in five innings of work.  She also was two for two at the plate with a double.

The Bulldogs had tied the game in the bottom of the seventh inning on a two-out single by senior Erin Jackson.

Day 2

Butler split two games on the second day of the Rebel Games in Orlando, Fla.  The Bulldogs dropped a narrow, 3-2, decision to Fairleigh Dickinson to begin the day, but then stormed back with a 10-0 victory over St. Peter's in the second game.

Butler jumped to a 2-0 lead on a two-run single by Alyssa Coleman in the second inning of the game against Fairleigh Dickinson, but the Knights tied the game in the bottom of the third inning and then scored the winning run off of Butler freshman Leah Bry in the fifth frame.

Erin Falkenberry slugged two home runs and drove in six runs to power Butler past St. Peter's in the second game.  The Butler first baseman had a grand slam and a two run home run in the victory, while senior Erin Jackson went three for three in the game.  Junior Lauren McNulty added a couple of hits, including a triple

Senior righthander Jennifer Chasteen pitched a five inning shutout to pick up the win.  She extended her streak of innings without allowing an earned run to 24.2.