WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Howard University softball team struggled to string together hits as it fell to UMBC, 11-3, in six innings on Wednesday night at the Nationals Youth Academy.
The Retrievers (6-14) set the tone early as they scored nine runs in the first four innings to defeat the Bison (0-11). Howard and UMBC combined for 22 hits and five errors.
Deja Henderson continued to show her strength at the plate going 2-3 on a pair of doubles with a run scored. Imani Ballard and Alannah Baiyina each tallied an RBI for the Bison. Alexa Walker (0-4) earned the loss after going 2.0 innings giving up five hits and four runs.
Down by five, Howard started to find its grove in the bottom of the third after Henderson's extra-base hit put her in scoring position. Noel Merritt singled on a bunt to get Henderson over to third base, who would score on a grounder. With two on and two outs, Imani Ballard's RBI single drove in Merritt to cut the deficit to 5-2.
UMBC tacked on four runs in the top of the fourth to widen the gap. Kamryn Tillman opened the bottom half with a single up the middle. She rounded the bases to score Howard's final run thanks to a balk, wild pitch and fielding error.
Despite hits from Milan Poindexter and Henderson in the fifth and sixth innings, the Bison were unable to make it count.
Howard will spend its Spring Break taking part in the Puerto Rico Classico from Friday, Mar. 10 through Sunday, Mar. 12. The Bison will face Florida A&M and Albany twice, along with one game against Furman.