The Beloit College softball team kicked off the 2018 season with two games at the ACM Dome Tournament hosted at the Rochester Regional Stadium and Bubble in Rochester, Minnesota Saturday.
The Bucs fell to eighth-ranked Luther 5-0 in the season opener and 12-3 to Dubuque in five innings in their first contests of the season.
Beloit held the nationally ranked Norse of Luther scoreless through the first four innings of the first game Saturday but the Buccaneers were unable to gain momentum at the plate.
Junior Ashley Lambert (Waukegan, Ill.) led the Bucs offensively with a hit in two plate appearances. Junior pitcher Alyssa Boltik (Elm Grove, Wis.) went the distance on the mound giving up three earned runs while striking out two in the game.
The Bucs got their offense going in the first inning against Dubuque. Sophomore outfielder Madi Christine (Huntington Beach, Calif.) reached on an error by a Spartan infielder. First-year shortstop Brianne Swanson (Beloit, Wis.) moved Christine into scoring position with a sacrifice bunt and Lambert tallied the RBI with a single to center field with two outs in the inning.
Beloit struck again in the top of the second inning. First-year second baseman Alyssa Morris (Aurora, Ill.) tagged a ground rule double to lead off the inning. Sophomore catcher Kaity Grzeszkiewicz (Greendale, Wis.) followed with a walk and sophomore first baseman Danielle Strejc (Evanston, Ill.) laid down a bunt for a single to load the bases. Junior left fielder Alex Kohn (Freeport, Ill.) put the ball in play forcing a fielder’s choice coupled with another Spartan error that allowed two runners to cross the plate and knot the game 3-3.
Dubuque put together big third and fourth innings leading to the 12-3 final in the shortened game.
Lambert led the Bucs offensively with a perfect 3-3 performance at the plate to go 4-5 on the day in the batter’s box with an RBI.
First-year hurler Makayla Zundel took the loss on the mound after striking out two in three innings of work. Boltik and first-year Emily Stapay (Gilberts, Ill.) also saw time on the mound in the game.
The Bucs will face UW-River Falls at 8 a.m. Sunday followed by a noon game against Macalester College to wrap up the ACM Dome Tournament.