Softball splits doubleheader

By on April 5, 2006

A little rainy weather didn’t dampen the mood for the Quinnipiac softball team as they went into their doubleheader with Harvard last Saturday afternoon. But the Crimson’s late comeback in game two sure did.

After a decisive 5-3 win in game one, the Bobcats lost a heartbreaker in the second game of the doubleheader, finding themselves on the wrong end of a 3-1 score. With the split Quinnipiac moves to 6-25 overall, while Harvard stands at 10-11.

With game two tied at one in the top of the seventh, Harvard struck for two runs to put the game out of reach. After a groundout, two consecutive walks ended the afternoon for Bobcat starter Jessica Skaare.

Kristin Sheriff came on in relief and almost got out of the inning unscathed until Harvard’s Erin Halpenny lined a two-out single up the middle scoring two, making it a 3-1 ball game. Quinnipiac was unable to push a run across in the home half of the seventh, securing the win for the Crimson.

“Today was bittersweet,” Skaare said. “We lost [game 2] but we knew we were right in it and playing as a team. You just have to keep looking forward, keep looking ahead for the next opportunity.”

Skaare cruised through the first four innings without surrendering a hit and it appeared the Bobcats were well on their way to a sweep. She took the mound in the top of the fifth with a 1-0 lead and recorded two quick outs.

But Harvard’s Lauren Brown followed with a long home run to left field notching the game at one. Things stayed scoreless until Harvard’s two-run rally in the seventh.

Skaare was the tough luck loser on the day, firing 6 1/3 innings, allowing four hits and striking out seven. She drops to 1-10 on the season.

Harvard’s Shelly Madick threw a complete game four-hitter, also striking out seven. She improved to 5-2. Sarah Collins’ RBI single in the first inning provided the lone run for the Bobcats.

In game one, the Bobcats scored two runs in the second inning and three in the third and made it stand up for a 5-3 victory. Maria Browne’s RBI double in the second and Collins’ solo home run in the third were the offensive highlights. Jill Viglione also chipped in with two hits for Quinnipiac.

On the mound for the Bobcats, Carolyn Schmolz danced out of trouble early to earn the win. With Quinnipiac up 5-2, in the top of the fourth, Schmolz was the beneficiary of a sparkling diving catch in left field by Browne, a play that all but extinguished a possible Harvard rally.

Schmolz only gave up one other run after that, a solo home run to the Crimson’s Bailey Vertovez, which made it a 5-3 game and ended the scoring. Sheriff slammed the door in the sixth and seventh innings to pick up her first save of the season.

With the win, Schmolz jumps to 3-7 on the season. She allowed two earned runs in five plus innings of work and struck out one. Harvard starting pitcher Amanda Watkins fell to 2-5. She went 2 2/3 innings giving up six hits and four runs.

At the end of the day, Schmolz was confident her team was ready to open up the in-conference portion of their schedule.

“We just have to string our hits together,” Schmolz said. “Our pitching has really started to pick it up, and I think that’s really going to help us.”

The Bobcats were on the road to Maryland just minutes after game two on Saturday. They began NEC play Sunday by splitting a doubleheader with Mount St. Mary’s. After dropping the first game, 4-0, the Bobcats used a six-run 11th inning to win game two, 11-5.


About Brendan Dowding