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February 23, 201812345678RHE
Fort Wayne00000021370
Tennessee State00020000261
Win: Bailey Benefiel (4-1) 4.210016
Loss: POWELL (0-7) 8.073212
Lauren Watson (FW) 403000
SNELL (TSU) 211010
VIRE (TSU) 201000
O'KANE (TSU) 411100
ENNIS (TSU) 301000
JOHNSON (TSU) 301000
Tigers Suffer Heartbreaker in Home Opener
Friday, February 23, 2018
Tigers Suffer Heartbreaker in Home Opener


GAME 10Fort Wayne 3, Tennessee State 2 (8 inn)
 TSU (0-10), FW (5-6)
FIELD: Tiger Field
LOCATION: Nashville, Tenn.
WEATHER: Partly Sunny, 80

NASHVILLE, Tenn. --- The Tennessee State softball team came up short for their first win of the season during the home opener at Tiger Field on Friday afternoon. The Tigers were two outs away from gaining a 2-0 win before Fort Wayne charged back to even the score to force extra innings. The Mastadons completed the comeback with a run in the eighth inning for a 3-2 victory.

TSU used back-to-back RBI hits from Erica O’Kane and Katie Schneider to gain a 2-0 advantage in the fourth inning. O’Kane drove in Sarah Snell with a double to centerfield for the first run of the game. Schneider followed by lacing a shot into right field, allowing O’Kane to scamper home.

Starting pitcher Lauren Powell (0-7) was tossing a gem, surrendering just two hits through the first six innings. Fort Wayne used three hits, a walk and a hit batter to push home two runs. The Mastadons were able to push a run across in the first extra fame during the international tiebreaker, where a runner begins on second base.

Kasey Cox started on second in the bottom half of the eighth and moved to third on a sacrifice bunt by Bri Vire. On the play, Snell moved to second after reaching base after being hit by a pitch. The duo was stranded in scoring position as the last two batters were fanned by reliever Bailey Benefiel.


  • Katie Schneider earned a hit in the contest, extending her hitting streak to four games.
  • Erica O’Kane cracked her second double of the season.
  • O’Kane has reached safely in seven consecutive contests.
  • Sarah Snell, Bri Vire, Whitney Ennis and Ariel Johnson all contributed to the team’s six hits.
  • Snell finished 1-for-2 with a walk and a hit by pitch.
  • Lauren Powell tossed 8.0 innings and surrendered three runs, two earned, on seven hits, a walk and a hit batter.

The Game

  • Ariel Johnson recorded the first hit of the contest with a single to left to open the third.
  • Johnson was stranded at second, after moving up 60 feet on a Megan Huppee sacrifice bunt.
  • Lauren Powell worked a perfect three innings before the Mastadons first runner reached on an error in the fourth.
  • FW picked up its first hit on a bunt single a batter later.
  • Powell would get out of the jam retiring the next three baters, the final via the strikeout.
  • Sarah Snell began the fourth with a single down the left field line and advanced to second on a Bri Vire sacrifice.
  • Erica O’Kane drove the ball to the fence in center to plater Snell for a 1-0 lead.
  • Katie Schneider plated O’Kane a batter later with a shot into right extending the lead to 2-0.
  • Whitney Ennis delivered a single up the middle off starter Shaina Eyre to move pinch runner Patton Akers to third.
  • Reliever Bailey Benefiel fanned the next two Tigers to avoid any other damage.
  • Benefiel slowed down the Tigers, scattering a hit, a walk and a hit by pitch over the next four innings.
  • The Mastadons cut the lead to 2-1 on a sacrifice squeeze bunt and added the tying run on a single one batter later.
  • Fort Wayne’s effort to take the lead in the seventh ended as Vire gunned down a base runner at home for the final out of the frame.
  • FW scored the game winner on a leadoff single in the eighth.


The Tigers will continue play in the Belmont/TSU Winter Warmup on Saturday with a contest against North Dakota. First pitch is set for 12:15 p.m. at Tiger Field.


  • The Tigers wore the new all white uniforms with blue stirups
  • This marked the first home game of the 2018 season for the Tigers
  • Lauren Powell has pitched in nine of the Tigers 10 games this year
  • This is the second extra inning game TSU has played this season
  • The Big Blue dropped a 5-4 decision to Alabama State on Feb. 10