Softball drops two to Catholic in final doubleheader of regular season

Softball drops two to Catholic in final doubleheader of regular season

Salisbury, Md. – The Salisbury University softball team closed out the regular season with a doubleheader against Catholic University of America on Saturday afternoon at Sea Gull Softball Stadium, falling in each game to the Cardinals.

Game 1: Catholic 6, Salisbury 5

The teams struggled to get runs home in the early innings with Salisbury starting pitcher Rachael Milligan and Catholic starter Claire Sturek limiting the chances.

The Cardinals put three runners on in the first two innings, but Milligan stranded all three, while Sturek gave up just two walks in the first two innings, but nothing came of it for the Sea Gulls.

Salisbury got its first of six hits against Sturek in the third inning, getting back-to-back infield singles with one out from LeAnne Collins and Kristen Yanarella.

After a grounder to third erased Collins for the second out of the inning, junior Annie Pietanza came up with an RBI single. At the end of a long at-bat, facing seven pitches, Pietanza hit a soft liner on a low pitch into left field. Rachel Cadigan, who pinch ran for Yanarella, scored from second, just beating the throw for the 1-0 lead.

One pitch later, a wild pitch brought home Caitlin Lake for the 2-0 lead.

A Collins single up the middle in the fourth pushed Salisbury's advantage to 3-0, plating freshman Emily Allen, but the Cardinals got to Milligan for three runs in the fifth inning, and added three off reliever Shannon Powell in the sixth to grab a 6-3 lead.

Salisbury battled back in the bottom of the sixth, scoring two times on two hits, with both Yanarella and senior Summer Paglianete scoring on wild pitches in the inning, but the tying run was stranded on third when Catholic reliever Kelly Lynch got a flyout to end the frame.

Lynch picked up the save in the game, working the final four outs, giving up a one-out single in the seventh, but leaving the runner on base.

Collins was 3-for-3 in the game, scoring once and driving in one, while Allen had two hits.

Game 2: Catholic 4, Salisbury 0

Lynch got the start for the Cardinals in the second game and went the distance, allowing just five Salisbury hits.

Catholic (24-12) scored twice in the opening inning off sophomore Brooke Mizelle, notching three hits in the opening inning.

Salisbury (21-19) came back in the home half of the first and put two runners on base, with Collins and freshman Brooke Yerger each reaching on bunt singles, Lynch got the final two outs of the inning on a bunt and a strikeout to end the threat.

The Sea Gulls put three more runners into scoring position, with freshman Mikayla Meehan doubling with two down in the second and Yerger coming up with a two-base hit in the sixth after Lake walked, but each runner was left on base as Lynch collected her 12th win of the season.

Catholic scored its third run in the top of the third inning and added one more in the seventh to cap the scoring.

Yerger finished with three of Salisbury's five hits in the game, while Mizelle struck out four in the complete-game effort.

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