SOFTBALL WALKS OFF WITH VICTORY OVER MANHATTAN, 3-2
SOUTH ORANGE, N.J. - The Monmouth University softball team defeated Manhattan for the second time this weekend, 3-2, in the consolation game of the Seton Hall Strike Out Cancer Tournament on Sunday afternoon. Lauren Sulick (Canfield, Ohio/Canfield) came on in relief and worked out of a jam in the top of the seventh, before the Hawks manufactured the winning run in the bottom half to walk off with the win. With the victory, the Hawks improve to 7-6, while the Jaspers fall to 1-14.
Christine Scherr (Nazareth, Pa./Nazareth Area) led the Hawks' offense, going 3-for-4 with a run scored, while Alicia DeSanto (Upper Darby, Pa./Upper Darby) went 2-for-2, starting the game-winning rally with an infield single and coming around to score the decisive run on Kayla Weiser's (Vandergrift, Pa./Kiski Area) sacrifice fly. Kate Kuzma (Freehold, N.J./Colts Neck) also added a solo home run for the Hawks.
Alissa Schoelkopf (Sewell, N.J./Washington Township) started the game in the circle for the Hawks, allowing just two unearned runs on three hits and four walks in 4.1 innings pitched, before giving way to Sulick. The senior hurler earned the win, holding the Jaspers scoreless on one hit and one walk, while fanning four in 2.2 innings pitched.
The Hawks scored first in the bottom of the first, manufacturing a run after Scherr reached on a leadoff infield single and stole second. She moved to third on a sacrifice bunt from Tish Derer (Philadelphia, Pa./Saint Basil Academy) and scored on a Vanessa Cardoza (Santa Ana, Cailf./Ocean View) sacrifice fly.
The Jaspers pulled even with an unearned run in the second, when Amanda Paxson scored on an error on what would've been the third out. Manhattan then pulled ahead in the fifth, when Kate Bowen reached on a leadoff error, moved to second on a sacrifice bunt, and took third on consecutive walks. She then scored on a groundout.
Kuzma's home run to lead off the bottom of the fifth tied the game at 2-2. Sulick struck out the side in the top of the sixth, but following a Kaitie Schumacher (San Diego, Calif./Scripps Ranch) walk, the Hawks were set down in order to push the 2-2 tie to the seventh.
The Jaspers threatened with a Jocelin Whitmore double to lead off the inning. After Kate Bowen was hit by a pitch, the runners moved to second and third on an Amanda Berrios sacrifice bunt. A walk loaded the bases before Sulick struck out Paxson and got a groundout to extinguish the threat.
DeSanto got the decisive rally started with an infield single, before moving to second on a wild pitch. DeSanto had to hold at second on Scherr's infield single, before the two runners advanced to second and third on Derer's groundout. After Cardoza walked to load the bases, Weiser drove in DeSanto with a sacrifice fly to right field.
The Hawks return to action Saturday, when they commence Northeast Conference play with a home doubleheader against defending NEC Tournament Champion Sacred Heart. First pitch from Monmouth Softball Park is scheduled for 1 p.m.