ITHACA, N.Y. -- The Columbia softball team split its doubleheader at Cornell on Sunday at Niemand*Robison Field. The Lions muscled their way to a 7-3 win in the first game before four-run Big Red fourth inning doomed the Lions in a 5-3 Game 2 loss.
The Lions built a 3-1 advantage three and a half frames into the second game, but Cornell seized momentum with five hits and four runs in the fourth.
Game 1: Columbia 7, Cornell 3
The Lions jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the first inning to take command early. With two outs and runners on first and second, Tristin Moone drilled a 2-0 pitch off Cornell starter Jenna Stoller for a three-run home run.
Cornell got on the scoreboard in the bottom of the second inning when Morgan Cawley hit a two-out RBI single off Columbia starter Brooke Darling to bring home Kristin Towne from second base.
The Big Red evened the game at 3-3 in the bottom of the fourth when Katie Watts hit a one-out RBI single to right field and Clare Feely followed with at an RBI foulout to right.
The Lions retook the lead in the top of the fifth when leadoff hitter Jennifer Bergeron hit a home run on the first pitch of the inning.
Columbia’s lead grew to 6-3 in the sixth. With the bases loaded and one out, Lauren Marx in the circle for Cornell, Alison Lam scored from third base on a wild pitch. In the same at-bat Morgan Cook clubbed a sac fly to left field to plate Alix Cook.
The Lions had one more run in the seventh to give them a four-run advantage. With one out and two runners in scoring position, Emily Snodgrass connected for an RBI double to left center field, plating pinch runner Kira Ullman.
Moone was 1-of-3 with the three-run homer. Bergeron was 1-of-2 with the solo home run, two runs scored and two walks. Alix Cook finished 2-of-3 at the dish with one run scored.
Darling tossed seven frames and allowed three earned runs.
Stoller ook the loss for Cornell, falling to 7-4 after allowing four earned runs over 4.1 innings. Lauren Marks allowed three earned runs over two relief frames and Sammy Roth threw a scoreless two-thirds of an inning.
GAME 2: Cornell 5, Columbia 3
Cornell took a 1-0 lead in the second inning. With the bases loaded and one out, Linda Laeufer reached an a fielder’s choice to plate Katrina Conklin.
Columbia didn’t wait long to answer, knotting the game at 1-1 in the top of the third. With one out and runners on second and third, Alix Cook hit into an RBI groundout at short, allowing Emily Snodgrass to score from third base.
The Lions pulled ahead 3-1 in the top of the fourth. Morgan Cook started the inning with a single up the middle off Cornell starter Alyson Onyon. Tristin Moone followed with a double to left center to put two runners in scoring position. Alex O’Hagan entered to pinch run and two batters later, Liz Caggiano ripped an RBI single to right field to give Columbia the lead. Snodgrass followed with an RBI single to short to plate O’Hagan.
Cornell strung together four singles to score its first two runs of the fourth. With two on and one out, Jenny Edwards hit an RBI single the center field. With two outs, Erin Keene hit an RBI single to left field and advanced to second base. Kristen Towne followed with a two-RBI double to left to give Cornell the 5-3 advantage.
Columbia had numerous chances to climb back over the next three frames but came up short. The Lions left one runner stranded in the fifth and sixth. In the seventh, the Lions left two runners on. Alix Cook reached with one out on a fielding error at first base and Jennifer Bergeron hit a single to left field in the next at-bat. Morgan Cook reached on a fielder’s choice with Alix Cook out at third in the following at-bat, keeping runners on first and second with two outs. The game ended when Moone hit into a fielder’s choice to the shortstop, who stepped on second base for the force out.
Caggiano was 2-of-3 with one RBI. Snodgrass and Alix Cook each had one hit and one RBI.
Kalli Schultea (3-13) took the loss after striking out two and allowing five earned runs over six innings in the circle.
Onyon earned the win for Cornell and allowed two earned runs over seven frames.
Columbia will be back in action on Wednesday when they head to Teaneck, N.J., to conclude a 12-game road stretch with a doubleheader at Fairleigh Dickinson. The Lions return to Columbia Softball Field on April 21 to open a four-game home series against Princeton.