Pirates defeat Villanova in makeup doubleheader
The softball team (14-28) swept a doubleheader with Villanova Monday in part of a makeup of a rainout last month, winning game one 5-4 and game two 10-2.
Villanova got on the board first in game two, opening up the game with two quick singles. The second of those two hits came from sophomore Shea Palmer, who would come home to score on a single up the middle from sophomore Sierra McConnell, giving the Wildcats an early 1-0 advantage.
Seton Hall starting pitcher, junior Casey Moses, would not allow much damage after that.
In fact, Seton Hall’s six-run second inning was enough to propel the team to victory. The inning started with a single to right field by junior Whitney Jones. Sophomore Jackie DiPietro would then reach safely on a sacrifice bunt, with Jones advancing to third on a throwing error. After junior Sara Haefeli flied out to right field, Colltey Sheldon came through with a double to left field, scoring Jones and DiPietro, and giving Seton Hall the lead 2-1. Sophomore Faith Laudano would then single, moving Sheldon to third. In an attempt to catch Laudano stealing second, another defensive error would lead to a Seton Hall run, this time allowing Sheldon to cross the plate. Later in the inning, senior Maria DeLuca singled to set up runners on the corners for junior Danielle DeStaso. A triple by DeStaso would plate both Laudano and DeLuca and stretch the lead to 5-1 in favor of the Pirates. The Pirates would tack on their sixth run of the inning on an RBI single by senior Meredith Henze.
Seton Hall would add another run in the third inning, with an RBI single by Laudano, who scored DiPietro who had reached on a single. Laudano finished the game 3-4 with two RBIs.
Down 7-1, Villanova would have to mount a serious comeback if it had any hopes of beating the Pirates. The Wildcats were able to muster a run, their final run of the game, in the fourth inning. Freshman Natalia Segovia singled and later came home to score on a throwing error by Laudano.
With the game all but over, Seton Hall would put the Wildcats down for good in their final at bat with three insurance runs, bringing the score to its final score of 10-2.
Game one needed extra innings to decide a winner.
Seton Hall struck early in the first inning, plating two runs. The bases were loaded with the first three batters on singles by sophomore Yasmin Harrell, DeLuca and DeStaso respectively. DiPietro would single Harrell and DeLuca home to give the Pirates the 2-0 lead.
Both offenses would remain quiet until the third inning, with Villanova adding two runs to nod up the score. A single by sophomore Aleshia Ayers, and walks to Herschberg and Palmer allowed the Wildcats to load the bases. Game one starter DeStaso was unable to find the strike zone for the third batter in a row and walked freshman Chase Snell to get Villanova on the board. McConnell would then fly out to center field to score Herschberg and tie the game up at 2-2.
Seton Hall answered right back in the fourth. After a double by DeLuca and a walk by DeStaso, Jones came through with her third double of the season, this time for two RBIs, to give the Pirates a 4-2 lead.
But Villanova would not go quietly.
In the fifth, with two outs, a two-run home run by McConnell would even up the score yet again, at 4-4. Snell, who reached on a single, scored on the long ball.
The score would remain tied at four until the ninth inning. DiPietro led off the inning with a double and later advanced to third on a sacrifice groundout by Sheldon. With DiPietro on third, sophomore Alex Rabbetts’ fly out to centerfield was enough to score the eventual winning run. Villanova threatened in the bottom-half of the inning, but DeStaso was able to settle down and secure the win for the Pirates.
With the series won, the Pirates will take on the Wildcats on Tuesday, April 22 aiming for the three-game sweep. First pitch is set for 3:30 p.m.
David Heim can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.