NORTHFIELD, Vt. – The Norwich University softball team split another Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) doubleheader with Emmanuel College on Saturday afternoon at the NU Softball Field. Norwich (8-17-1, 8-8 GNAC) split a GNAC series for the sixth time out of eight twinbills this season after falling 7-0 in Game 1, before coming back for a 6-2 win in the second game.
Sophomore pitcher Emily Oliver (Sagamore Hills, Ohio) threw 7.2 innings giving up just six hits and two earned runs while striking out two. She earned the win in Game 2 for her second of the season to improve to 2-9.
In Game 2, sophomore Madison Miller (Long Lake, N.Y.) went 3-for-3 with two RBIs, while senior Justina George (Wallingford, Conn.) added three hits as well to lead the Cadets' offense. Katie Reid (Gold Canyon, Ariz.) chipped in with two runs scored and two RBIs.
In Game 1, Norwich couldn't solve Emmanuel ace Jill Kilcoyne, who fired a complete-game two-hitter and struck nine to lead the Saints (14-12, 11-3 GNAC) to the win. The Cadets were plagued by two untimely errors that to a big four-run third inning for Emmanuel, highlighted by a three-run bomb from Susie Kieselback. Ashley Skey also drove in two runs for the Saints to lead the offense in a 7-0 win.
Freshmen Laurie Urie (St. Johnsbury, Vt.) and Makenna Wade (Pensacola, Fla.) each had a hit for Norwich in the first game.
Wade, Olivia Bussiere (Northfield, Vt.) and Sarah Perry (New Bedford, Mass.) each had hits as well in Game 2 for the Cadets.
Norwich put up three spots in the second and the third inning to take control of the second game and then hold on for the win. Oliver went four innings, giving up five hits and two earned runs to pick up the victory. Johnson came on to get the first save of the season, throwing three innings, giving up two hits and five walks, while striking out three.
With six games left in the GNAC regular season, Norwich sits seventh in the GNAC standings. The Cadets are 8-8 in league play, while sixth place Suffolk is 7-6. If NU finishes fifth or sixth, it would host a GNAC Tournament First Round game. The Saints are in uncharted territory with a shot at a first round bye for the first time in program history, vying for one of the top four spots in the tourney field. The top eight teams make the playoffs with six teams advancing to a double-elimination format following the first round games.
NU closes out its regular season home schedule on Sunday when it hosts Saint Joseph's (Maine) at 12 p.m. and 2 p.m. Prior to the game, NU will honor its three seniors with a Senior Day ceremony. The Saints head to Johnson & Wales University for a key GNAC twinbill.
*Release courtesy of Norwich University Athletic Communications