ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. -- Bradley pitchers limited Central Michigan to five hits, but the Braves stranded six runners in scoring position and had a total of eight left on base in a 4-0 loss to the Chippewas to wrap up the first day of play at the Lobo Classic Friday afternoon.
Despite outhitting Central Michigan (1-0 overall) 6-5, Bradley (3-4 overall) was unable to push a run across against Chippewa starter Kara Dornbos, who struck out five and walked one in the complete game shutout.
"We were all around flat against a good Central Michigan team," stated Bradley head coach Amy Hayes. "We found ways to out hit them and our pitchers put up more strikeouts, but we left too many on while their hits were timely. If Bri's (Joseph) last line drive goes a bit left or right we are right back in it with no outs and some runs on the board. She squared it up, but it was right at the kid. I'm glad we battled in the seventh, but the lesson is to not leave it undone until then."
Bradley left a runner at second base in both the first and second innings after getting leading off singles from junior Brianne Joseph (Post Falls, Idaho/Post Falls) and sophomore Alyson Clemente (Murrieta, Calif./Murrieta Valley), respectively.
Central Michigan scored all the runs it would need in the top of the second inning, plating a pair of runs to take a 2-0 lead. Cory DeLamielleur drew a one-out walk and stole second before coming around to score from second on a double to left center by Katelyn Rentschler. Brittney Horan followed with the first of her two RBI singles, driving in DeLamielleur with a single to left center.
The Chippewas opened the top of the third with back-to-back singles and Macy Merchant later scored on a Bradley error as Central Michigan pushed the advantage to 3-0.
Junior Marina Groenewegen (Surrey, British Columbia/Elgin Park Secondary/Southern Idaho) led off the bottom of the fourth for the Braves with a single and promptly stole second, but was stranded at third as Dornbos took a shutout into the fifth.
A leadoff walk in the top of the sixth led to another Central Michigan run, with DeLamielleur scoring again on a two-out Horan single to give the Chippewas a 4-0 lead.
The Braves had their best scoring opportunity in the bottom half of the sixth after Groenewegen started a rally attempt with a one-out single. Sophomore Bailiegh Basham (Mattoon, Ill./Mattoon/Lake Land C.C.) drew a walk to stretch her streak of consecutive games reaching base safely to 15 contests and Bradley had the bases loaded after Clemente reached on a CMU error. Dornbos and the Chippewas got out of the inning unscathed, however, getting the next hitter on an infield fly and closing the inning with a pop out to second base.
Bradley had one more rally attempt in the seventh after sophomore Brittany Burgess (Utica, Ill./St. Bede) reached on an error to open the inning and junior Mariah Cole (Springfield, Ill./Chatham Glenwood) had a bunt single to put runners at first and second with no outs. A flyout and double play ended the threat as Central Michigan took its season opener 4-0.
Freshman Amanda Barna (Orland Park, Ill./Sandburg) took the loss in the circle for Bradley, falling to 0-1 on the year. Groenewegen and Cole each went 2-for-3 to help highlight Bradley's offensive efforts.
The Braves continue action at the Lobo Classic Saturday, opening tomorrow's action with a 12:15 game against tournament-host New Mexico.