CLEARWATER, Fla. -- Richard Bland College dropped three softball games on Saturday at the JUCO Kickoff Classic in Clearwater, Florida. The NJCAA Division II Statesmen (0-5) fell in a trio of contests against NJCAA Division I programs, including State College of Florida, Manatee-Sarasota (9-1) in five innings, Florida State College at Jacksonville (1-0) and Miami Dade College (4-3). Richard Bland will not play again until February 17 when the Statesmen begin Region X Conference action at Southeastern Community College-Whiteville in Whiteville, North Carolina.
In the opener against SCF, Manatee-Sarasota, Richard Bland scored a run in the first inning before the Manatees scored two runs in the bottom of the first, three in the third and four more runs in the fourth inning for the final eight-run margin.
In the first, sophomore August Ringer/Yale (1-3) reached on an error by the shortstop and later crossed the plate on another error, this time by the catcher. Ringer had one of three hits in the game, along with classmates Morgan Whitley/Franklin (1-1) and Katelyn King/Chesterfield (1-2).
Freshman Brooklynn Bilyard/Culpeper (0-1) started in the circle and took the pitching setback with the first 2.1 innings, allowing six hits and five runs, four earned, with one strikeout and two walks. Sophomore Katelyn Cobb/Newsoms pitched 1.0 inning, allowing six hits and four runs, three earned, with one strikeout and no walks. Sophomore Shannon Buffington/Virginia Beach tossed the final two-thirds of an inning, with two strikeouts.
Against FSC at Jacksonville, the Blue Wave scored the lone run of the contest in the second inning.
Buffington (0-2) started in the circle and took the complete-game pitching setback with the 6.0 innings, scattering four hits and one run, earned, with three strikeouts and three walks.
The Statesmen had seven hits in the contest, including Ringer (2-4), freshman Taylor Daniel/Alberta (2-3), sophomore Tiffany Hedge/Fredericksburg (1-3), King (1-4) and sophomore Tabby Dabney/Mechanicsville (1-4).
Against Miami Dade in the tournament finale, Richard Bland took a 3-0 advantage with three runs in the third inning. Unfortunately, the Sharks rallied with two runs in the third and a run each in the sixth and seventh innings for the final one-run margin.
In the third, Bilyard (2-3) singled with one out and later scored on an error by the pitcher that allowed Daniel (1-3) to reach base. Hedge (1-4) followed with an infield single to shortstop, and both Daniel and Hedge crossed the plate on a clutch, two-out and two-run single by Dabney (2-4, 2 RBIs). Ringer (1-4) added the other of the team's seven hits in the contest.
Dabney started in the circle and pitched the first 5.1 innings, allowing eight hits and three runs, two earned, with three strikeouts and one walk. Cobb (0-1) tossed the final 1.0 inning in defeat, yielding two hits and one run, earned, with no strikeouts and one walk.