Saints Test Rochester in Doubleheader, fall 7-1 and 3-2
Apr. 25: The St. Lawrence University softball team gave the defending two-time Liberty League champion, the University of Rochester, all it could handle in a doubleheader at Saints Softball Field in Canton, NY on Saturday. After dropping the opening game 7-1, St. Lawrence battled Rochester to a 10-inning contest in game two which the Yellowjackets pulled out 3-2.
St. Lawrence sophomore pitcher Rachel Duffany was outstanding in game two for the Scarlet and Brown, throwing 10.0 innings while allowing three hits and no earned runs. However, she was out-dueled by the Rochester combination of Sara Hutchinson and Beth Ameno, who totaled 17 strikeouts while scattering eight hits in the winning effort.
"Rachel (Duffany) really got into a nice groove during game two and kept one of our league's best offenses off the scoreboard for nine full innings," said St. Lawrence head coach Fran Grembowicz. "We hurt ourselves with seven errors in the doubleheader and they proved to be costly in both games."
Rochester cruised to a 7-1 win in game one, as Ameno allowed only one base-runner in five innings pitched. Cara Celorio replaced her in the sixth inning and allowed one run on two hits, but the Yellowjackets' offense had already done damage against St. Lawrence sophomore hurler Meg Goodemote. Leading 3-0 in the sixth inning, Rochester's Kim Grimes delivered a three-run triple to put the game out of reach, while Elizabeth Slupinski followed with an RBI double to make it 7-0.
The Saints picked up their lone run in the bottom of the seventh inning when senior Sandy Gates lifted a sacrifice fly to center field which allowed junior Amy Atkins to score from third.
Ameno struck out 10 batters to earn the game one win, while Goodemote gave up five earned runs on eight hits to fall to 0-11 on the season.
Game two proved to be a pitcher's duel between Hutchinson and Duffany, as they each worked in and out of trouble throughout the game. The Saints loaded the bases in the bottom of the first inning but came away empty, then left two runners on in the second. Meanwhile, Rochester had runners on first and second with no one out but couldn't capitalize in the top of the fourth inning.
The Saints' best chance to take the lead came in the bottom of the sixth, when junior Molly Swan led off with a walk against Hutchinson and senior Emilie Lannamann reached on an error that allowed Swan to move to third with no one out. However, Hutchinson and the Yellowjackets' defense buckled down, getting two shallow fly outs and a strike out to strand the lead run at third base.
Both teams continued to strand runners through the ninth inning, as Ameno, who replaced Hutchinson in the seventh, battled Duffany in the later innings. In the tenth inning, each team started with a runner at second base. Duffany hit the first hitter she faced and then overthrew third to load the bases with no one out. The game's opening run came on a sac fly off the bat of Brittany Celeste to put Rochester on top 1-0, while Ameno followed with an RBI ground out for a 2-0 advantage. The Yellowjackets then capitalized on a dropped fly ball in right field which would've ended the inning and instead gave the visitors a 3-0 lead heading to the bottom of the 10th.
Senior Lilah Brown led off the Saints' half of the inning with a single that allowed sophomore Melissa Rogers to head to third base. Rogers would score on an errant throw after the Yellowjackets recorded their first out to make it 3-1, while Swan followed with an RBI single to plate Brown to bring the score to 3-2. After Swan advanced to second on a passed ball, though, Ameno was able to put the game away with a strikeout and a ground out to allow the Yellowjackets to celebrate a hard-fought 3-2 victory over the Saints.
Swan finished with two hits and an RBI for St. Lawrence, while Brown added two hits as well. Katie McLean, Nikki DiSalvio and Celeste posted Rochester's three hits off of Duffany, who fell to 4-7 with the loss.
St. Lawrence will be in action again tomorrow when they celebrate "Senior Day" against St. John Fisher at 1:00pm. The team will honor seniors Lilah Brown, Emilie Lannamann and Sandy Gates along with student assistants Meghan Richardson and Janelle Graves.