The Oldest College Newspaper in Pennsylvania

The Lafayette

The Oldest College Newspaper in Pennsylvania

The Lafayette

The Oldest College Newspaper in Pennsylvania

The Lafayette

Softball notches first win of season, drops three others at tourney

The Leopards’ next tournament is during spring break. (Photo courtesy of GoLeopards)

Softball (1-8 overall, 0-0 Patriot League) attended the UMBC Retriever Round Robin Tournament this past weekend in Baltimore, winning one of the four games for Karavin Dew’s first victory as head coach.

Over the course of the weekend, the team played four games against Youngstown State University (YSU) and the University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC). 

The Leopards managed their first win of the season as they took down YSU 5-4 in the first game of the tournament. Infielders sophomore Harlie Bickett and freshman Kylee Sweet drove in runs during the game. YSU held the lead over Lafayette, with three runs on five hits over the first two innings, but the Leopards brought the score to within two in the top of the third when Sweet’s right side groundout scored senior Erica Brasher, bringing the game 3-1.

YSU finished out the third inning with a triple and a sacrifice fly, bringing its lead to 4-1. The Leopards plated three runs on four hits to tie up the game in the fourth. Freshman outfielder Olivia Catalina hit one up the middle to score freshman first baseman Megan Coyle, who had reached on a one-out double. Bickett connected for a two-out, two-run double that scored Catalina and freshman outfielder Grace Hausamann.

Junior starting pitcher Jacqueline Cal held the score at 4-4, allowing no hits in the fifth. Bickett started the inning with a two-out infield single and then made it home on a hit from Sweet to give Lafayette the lead in the top of the sixth.

Cal continued her strong game in the bottom of the sixth, giving up only one hit. The Leopards closed the seventh to solidify a 5-4 victory.

The Leopards were unable to keep their momentum from game one going into the following three.

They fell 6-0 to UMBC, unable to overcome the Retrievers’ early lead.

Sophomore Morrigan Gardiner pitched game two, allowing six runs on 11 hits.

“I’ve made a lot of mental shifts from last year. I just tried to focus on every pitch on what I need to do,” she said.

Lafayette also faced defeat on Sunday, falling 4-0 in game three to Youngstown State, and 5-1 in game four to UMBC.

The Leopards had a rough start in game three as YSU took its 4-0 lead into the end of the fifth. Lafayette switched pitchers from Kailee Sawai to Gardiner after some trouble in the fifth, with Gardiner retiring three Youngstown batters to end the Penguins’ rally.

The Leopards’ offense was able to break YSU starter Devan Ryan’s no-hit bid in the fifth inning as senior outfielder Jasmine Nguyen hit a two-out single to center field. Sweet added a double in the sixth. The team had more opportunities to score in the seventh but was unable to tally a point.

Gardiner allowed no hits in her three innings of pitching, striking out three of nine batters.

Game four held a promising start for the team, with Bickett leading off with a single and advancing to second after a throwing error. Lafayette had runners at the corners and one out but could not fully capitalize, only driving in a single run. In the second inning, UMBC tied the game by scoring a run on two hits before taking the lead 3-1. The Retrievers extended their lead with runs in the fourth and fifth, bringing the final score to 5-1.

Going into practices after the weekend, the team will be focusing on improving its offense.

“We’re talking about attacking early and jumping on the other teams,” Gardiner said. “We got the hits just not in succession to score the runs.”

Softball will return to the diamond during spring break. In Madeira Beach, Florida they will play seven games from March 10 to March 14. 

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Fiona Cannon, Staff Sports Writer

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