April 12, 2012

Softball Takes Two From Hartford In Midweek Action

WORCESTER, Mass. – Senior Camille Trainor (Worcester, Mass.) showed her versatility once again as she caught the frontend and pitched the backend of a Holy Cross doubleheader sweep versus Hartford on Thursday afternoon at Freshman Field by scores of 12-4 (five innings) and 6-4. Sophomore Alex Gustafson (Medfield, Mass.) hit her second home run of the season and senior Nicole Ortiz (Whittier, Calif.) added her first to lead the Crusaders. Sophomore Kelliner Croushore (Claremont, Calif.) also extended her current hit streak to nine games as the Crusaders look to build off these victories in the final month of the season.

Game One

The Hawks got on the board first in the top of the first inning as Amber Andrews led off with a single and advanced to third on an error by the left fielder. Devynne Butler knocked her in on an infield grounder to give Hartford the early 1-0 lead. The Crusaders responded in the bottom of the second inning with two home runs to take the 2-1 advantage. Gustafson led off with her sixth career home run and just two batters later Ortiz drove one over the fence in dead center field for her third career long ball.

Hartford regained the lead in the top of the fourth inning taking advantage of two Holy Cross errors and plated three runs to make the score 4-2. The lead did not last, however, as the Crusaders responded with six runs in the bottom of the fourth. Junior Sam Fregenti (Melville, N.Y.) led off the inning with a double to left center field. Gustafson singled to advance Fregenti to third and Hawks pitcher Siena Sheehan struggled to find the plate, walking three and hitting one of the next five batters. Katelyn Meade came in to pitch with the score 5-4 and after freshman Rebecca Sewell (Bedminster, N.J.) recorded an RBI groundout, Croushore singled to left field to drive in two more runs and bring the Crusaders' lead to 8-4 after four.

Holy Cross added four more runs in the bottom of the fifth and ended the game in walk-off fashion. Gustafson led off with her third hit of the game and freshman Emma Keough (Rochester, Mass.) followed with a single deep in the hole at shortstop. Oritz doubled to bring in freshman Tori Cheske (Thomaston, Conn.), who had entered the game to pinch run for Gustafson. Freshman Cassie Girvalo (Putnam Valley, N.Y.) then tallied her first career hit and RBI, knocking a single up the middle to score Keough. Ortiz scored on a double steal and after a groundout, senior Gwen Reimer (Potsville, Pa.) singled to right field to score Girvalo and end the game with the Crusaders up by eight runs after five innings, 12-4.

Sophomore Julia Barrett (Gardner, Mass.) recorded her fourth win of the season allowing four runs (all unearned) on eight hits while striking out two and now stands at 4-10. Hawks' starting pitcher Ana Alberti went one and one-third innings giving up two runs on three hits. Sheehan suffered the loss, going two innings and allowing six runs on two hits while walking three. She now stands at 4-8 on the year. Kaitlyn Meade also made an appearance in relief of Sheehan and got the final two outs of the fourth and first out of the fifth to tally one inning of work allowing four runs on seven hits.

Game Two

Hartford took the lead in the top of the first inning once again as Andrews led off with a double. The next batter, Butler, then attempted to sacrifice Andrews to third but the Crusaders committed a throwing error allowing Andrews to score and Butler to move to second. Butler then went to third on a groundout and scored as the batter struck out on a ball in the dirt and ran to first forcing junior catcher Kat Rosenthal (Boston, Mass.) to make the throw. The Crusaders responded in the bottom half of the inning as Reimer led off with a single and Sewell drove her in on a double down the left field line to cut the Hartford lead in half, 2-1.

The Hawks added two runs in the top of the third when Peyton Fisher led off with a walk and stole second base. Andrews then singled deep in the hole at short, but the ball got away from the short stop allowing Fisher to advance to third and Andrews to second. Fisher scored on a past ball and Kate Wacyk drove in Andrews with a sacrifice fly to give Hartford the 4-1 advantage.

In the bottom of the third, Croushore hit a one-out single to ensure her hit streak continued and Fregenti followed suit by singling to left field. Gustafson then tallied her fourth hit of the day, knocking a double to right center field and scoring Croushore. Keough then singled to left field to bring in Fregenti and Gustafson and tie the ball game, 4-4.

In the bottom of the fourth, Sewell was hit by a pitch to start the inning and Croushore doubled to left field putting runners on second and third with no outs. After Fregenti walked, Hawks starting pitcher Eve Clausen was replaced by Sheehan who was able to get a fly out to left, but the left fielder made a throwing error attempting to double off Croushore at second base and Sewell came in to score. The next batter, Keough, recorded her third RBI of the game by doubling to right center field to score Croushore. With the score 6-4, Trainor was able to escape a bases loaded jam in the top of the sixth and retired the side in order in the seventh to complete the afternoon sweep having played both ends of the pitcher-catcher battery.

Trainor improved to 2-1 this season having allowed four runs (two earned) on four hits and striking out three. Clausen (0-5) suffered the loss going three-plus innings allowing six runs on eight hits, striking out one and walking four. Sheehan went three scoreless innings allowing just one hit and striking out two. Hartford fell to 4-31 (0-9 America East) overall on the season.

The Crusaders (6-22, 1-7 Patriot League) will return to Freshman Field on Saturday and Sunday, April 14-15, for doubleheaders against conference foe Lehigh beginning at 12:00 p.m., on both days.