By Malcolm Luck
Following a slow start to the season, the women’s softball team seem to be hitting their mid-season form as the group finds itself in the midst of a nine game winning streak dating back to March 22.
In the second doubleheader of New Jersey Athletic Conference play on the season, the Lions shut out Stockton University in both matches on April 2.
In the first game, sophomore starting pitcher Eliza Sweet tossed a complete game shutout, only allowing four hits over her seven innings of work. Offensively, the Lions gave her nine runs of support despite not scoring in the first two frames.
In the top of the third, sophomore outfielder Kaitlin Kocinski put the game’s first run on the board with an RBI single to right. Two innings later, she laced an RBI single to left to contribute to the Lions’ lead, and by the end of the game, the College won by the final tally of 9-0. Sophomore infielder Lauren Conroy had five hits to go along with two runs and three RBIs.
Sophomore starting pitcher Alanna Namit impressed on the mound in the second game against Stockton as well. Only allowing one hit and no runs through the game’s five innings, Namit improved her record to 8-2 on the year.
The Lions spread out their offense throughout the game, scoring at least one run in every inning.
Senior catcher Jess McGuire came up big for her team, scorching an RBI double to left field in the first inning and hitting an opposite field two-run home run in the third. Ultimately, the College went on to win 6-0.
On Saturday, April 6 the team would return home to Ewing, New Jersey to take on NJAC opponent Kean University in a doubleheader. Kean entered the day sporting a 2-2 conference record despite being 22-3 on the season.
The College got off to a hot start, scoring a run in the first on a Kocinski hit-by-pitch. A four-run second inning began with a single up the middle from sophomore outfielder Allie Immerso who would come around to score just one batter later on an RBI double from junior infielder Megan Mayernik.
Back-to-back doubles from sophomore outfielder Katie Winchock and sophomore infielder Lauren Conroy would stretch the lead to 4-0. Senior outfielder Gaby Bennett tacked on a run with an RBI groundout.
The early deficit didn’t phase Kean as the players forced themselves back into the game with a two-run sixth and a four-run seventh.
Kean tagged Sweet for four earned runs over 6 1/3 innings, chasing her from the game in the seventh inning. Freshman pitcher Tori Aguilar secured the final two outs of the inning and gave her team a chance to win in the bottom of the seventh inning with the game knotted at 6-6.
With two outs and the bases loaded, Conroy continued her hot streak by driving in junior infielder Annalise Suitovsky and winning the game for the Lions. Aguilar earned the win, improving to 2-1 on the season.
Namit thwarted all of Kean’s hopes for redemption in the second game as she tallied another complete game shutout on the season. Namit struck out eight batters and only surrendered two hits. Ultimately, the Lions would improve to 19-5 overall on the season and 6-0 in conference play.
Facing NJAC opponents for the remainder of the regular season, the next doubleheader will be held on Saturday, April 13 at Montclair State University.