No-Hitter, Walk-Off Error, Lead to Two ISU Losses in Orlando
Despite being charged with the loss, Sophia Perez set a season-high with 3.1 innings of quality relief
Despite being charged with the loss, Sophia Perez set a season-high with 3.1 innings of quality relief

March 2, 2013

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ORLANDO - Fifth-ranked Texas A&M's Mel Dumezich threw her third no-hitter in the past two weeks in the Illinois State softball (10-10) team's first game on Saturday, before James Madison scored the game-winning run in the bottom of the eighth inning on an error during the second contest, as the Redbirds fell twice at the ESPN Wide World of Sports. The Aggies defeated ISU 5-0, while the Dukes won 3-2.

After scoring 25 runs in two games Friday, the Redbird offense was limited to just two runs and five hits on Saturday. Shelby Music drove home the only two runs of the day for Illinois State, hitting her first home run since April 26, 2011, against James Madison. She now has seven RBI on the season, a career-high.

Erin Rodriguez and Sophia Perez allowed just one run each in relief, with Rodriguez coming in against the Aggies and Perez into the contest against JMU. Both Taylor Baxter and Regan Romshek were pulled in their fifth inning of work.

No. 5 Texas A&M 5, Illinois State 0

Dumezich's (WP, 14-0) performance marks the first time ISU has been no-hit since Feb. 26, 2010, against No. 20/24 UMass. The Aggie senior struck out a career-high 16, including a stretch from the third through sixth inning where every ISU out came via the "K."

Dumezich provided all of the offense she would need, hitting a solo home run against Baxter (LP, 5-3) to lead off the second inning. A three-run blast by Cali Lanphear in the fifth inning broke the contest open and chased Baxter from the game. Rodriguez (ND) relieved Baxter, allowing one run in 2.2 innings.

Stephanie Gallant was hit by a pitch to lead off the third, Jhavon Hamilton walked with two outs in the third and Sara Bradley walked in the fourth for ISU's only base runners of the game. The 16 strikeouts was a season-high as a team for the Redbirds, and most since going down 18 times in the aforementioned contest against UMass in 2010.

Kolby Hoffman tied a career-high with six assists, including two diving plays at second base.

James Madison 3, Illinois State 2 (8 inn.)

The Redbirds lost in walk-off fashion for the first time this season when the Dukes pushed across the game-winning run in the eighth inning. With international tiebreaker rules in effect and the game tied 2-2, pinch-runner Anna Klumpp began the inning on second base. Perez (LP, 1-1) got the next batter to pop up, before the Redbird defense surrendered the game-winner.

With a 0-1 count on Megan Shinaberry, Klumpp broke for third base. The third baseman Bradley was playing in, resulting in shortstop Lindsey Greene covering third as Klumpp slid in. Catcher Elizabeth Kay's throw went past Greene into shallow left field, allowing Klumpp to get back to her feet and scamper home to give the Dukes a 3-2 win.

The Redbirds had an opportunity to score in the top half of the eighth, as Hamilton began on second base and advanced to third on a sacrifice bunt by Laura Canopy. However, Music and Kay were struck out by Jailyn Ford (WP, 5-0) to end the threat.

The Dukes started the game's scoring in the first inning, when Jasmine Butler scored on a wild pitch by Romshek (ND). Music's home run to right gave ISU a 2-1 lead in the third, before Shinaberry scored the game-tying run in the fourth on a two-out bunt single from Hannah Hayes.

Despite the defensive lapse in the game's final inning, ISU's defense kept the game tied on numerous occasions. JMU appeared poised to grab the lead in the fifth, when Jasmine Butler led off with a triple to left center that chased Romshek. The Dukes tried another squeeze, but Kay grabbed the ball in front of the plate and applied a tag on Butler to keep it a tie game. Lauren Kellar also made a running catch in right center to strand Butler at third as the game-winning run in the bottom of the seventh inning.

The Redbirds conclude play at the Disney Citrus Classic with a rematch against No. 13 Louisiana-Lafayette, Sunday morning at 8 a.m., CST. The Ragin' Cajuns defeated ISU, 8-5, on Feb. 23.

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