BOSTON, Mass. – The Emmanuel College and University of Saint Joseph softball teams played to a Great Northeast Athletic Conference twinbill split Wednesday evening under the Roberto Clemente Field lights. The Blue Jays (19-12, 12-5 GNAC) took game one in a pitcher's duel, 2-0, before the Saints (15-15, 12-6 GNAC) rebounded for an 8-0 win in five innings in game two.
GAME 1 - 2-0, USJ
The Blue Jays manufactured an early run to jump out to a 1-0 lead in the first. Sophomore Morgan Skoly (Vernon, Conn.) led off the inning with a walk and moved into scoring position stealing second. Freshman pitcher Amaria Sharon (Tolland, Conn.) helped her own cause by driving in Skoly with an RBI double to right to give USJ the early advantage.
Sharon continued to dominate the Saints in the circle not allowing a runner to get in scoring position until the sixth inning when EC freshman Sydney Rogers (Southwick, Mass.) reached third following a Blue Jay throwing miscue. Emmanuel was unable to push the run across as Sharon retired the 2-3-4 hitters in the Saints lineup to keep the score at 1-0 heading into the final frame.
USJ added an insurance run in the seventh to bump the score to 2-0. Freshman designated player Brianna Barfield (North Attleboro, Mass.) led off the inning with a double to right and her run came around to score on a bloop-single just inside the left field line by Skoly.
Sharon retired the Saints in order in the seventh to preserve her 17th win of the year, throwing a complete-game shutout and allowing just three hits while striking out five. For the EC, senior pitcher Jill Kilcoyne (Worcester, Mass.) was the loser in the pitcher duel, going the distance an allowing the two runs on four hits while striking out eight to fall to 9-5 on the year.
GAME 2 – 8-0, EC (5 inn.)
Emmanuel turned the tables in game two with a pair of first inning runs to race out to a 2-0 lead. Both runs were unearned as Rogers and sophomore designated player Ashley Skey (Brookline, N.H.) reached on USJ miscues. Senior first baseman Susie Kieselback (Wethersfield, Conn.) delivered the only hit in the frame with an RBI triple to right to drive in Skey for the 2-0 cushion.
The Saints added two more runs in the second to make it 4-0. Senior third baseman Kara Madden (Silver Spring, Md.) and Rogers singled and came around to score on a two-RBI single to left by freshman second baseman Kara Madden (Medway, Mass.).
The hosts kept the heat on in the fourth to take a 6-0 lead as Rogers drove in two more runs with a two-RBI single to left.
In the field, sophomore Megan Kieselback (Wethersfield, Conn.) kept the Blue Jays bats quiet holding them scoreless through five innings.
S. Kieselback picked up her sister with an RBI single in the fifth to bump the lead to 7-0 before freshman outfielder Sarah Hoisl (West Hartford, Conn.) ended the game early with an RBI double to center to account for the 8-0 final.
M. Kieselback earned the win with a complete game shutout to improve to 5-6 on the year. Sharon suffered the loss for the Blue Jays to fall to 17-8 in the circle.
The Saints return to action tomorrow evening for a GNAC doubleheader against Saint Joseph's College (ME) while USJ hosts Anna Maria in a GNAC twinbill tomorrow at 3:00 and 5:00 PM.