Boca Raton, FL (4/9/11) - The Mean Green offense exploded for six runs in the final two innings, but the North Texas softball team came up just short in a 7-6 loss to Florida Atlantic on Saturday night at the FAU Softball Complex. Rose Gressley pitched a two-hit shutout to lead FAU to an opening 3-0 win as the Owls swept the Mean Green in doubleheader action.
The Owls improve to 24-18 and 8-3 in the conference, while the Mean Green falls to 17-22 and 3-11 in the Sun Belt. FAU leads the overall series, 9-7.
Gressley pitched a two-hit shutout in the first game, while Taylor Fawbush held the Mean Green scoreless for the first five innings in the nightcap. Mariza Martinez hit home runs in the sixth and seventh innings to lead the Mean Green with five RBI.
The Owls used a three-run second inning to take game one from the Mean Green. North Texas was hurt by two errors in the inning.
Brittany Simmons (9-10) took the loss, pitching a complete game. She allowed three runs off six hits. None of the runs were earned.
In the nightcap, North Texas fell behind early for the second straight game. FAU scored two runs in the first inning off a wild pitch and an RBI single. Two walks and an error aided the Owls. FAU added three runs in the fifth to take a 5-0 lead.
In the sixth, Mallory Cantler led off the inning with a single to centerfield for the Mean Green's third hit of the game. After Darian Blake came on to pinch run, Mariza Martinez brought her home with a long ball to right centerfield. Lisa Johnson scored the third run of the inning off a wild pitch.
The Mean Green added three more runs in the seventh inning off Martinez's second home run. Megan Rupp led off the inning with a single, and Cantler drew a walk to put two runners on for Martinez. Martinez hit her sixth home run of the season. It was the first time that she has hit two home runs in a single game. The home run cut the lead to 7-6, but two strikeouts ended the Mean Green threat.
Ashley Kirk (7-11) took the loss in the second game. The redshirt freshman allowed five runs off five hits. She struck out six batters in 4.2 innings of work.
FAU outhit the Mean Green, 16-10, in the combined two games.
North Texas returns to action on Sunday, April 10 when it finishes the conference series against FAU at 11 a.m.