The Seton Hall softball team opened up the Mercer Bears Classic in Macon, Ga., by splitting a double-header on Friday. SHU defeated the Oakland University Golden Grizzlies, 8-2, before falling to the Mercer University Bears in an 11-2 ballgame.
The Pirates and the Golden Grizzlies seemed even in the early innings with the score tied at 1-1, but the Pirates had an offensive outburst in the fourth inning. Senior Yasmin Harrell hit a two-RBI single to put the Pirates up 3-1. She later scored, along with junior Valerie Suto, after an error by Oakland right fielder Kelsie Swanson. Senior Alex Rabbetts doubled in another run one batter later, and freshman Chrisa Head singled in Rabbetts to cap off a six-run inning for the Pirates.
This gave the Pirates a 7-1 lead that they would not relinquish for the rest of the game. Seton Hall would put up another run in the sixth inning when junior Noel Lent scored on an error by Oakland shortstop Sarah Hartley, but Oakland answered back in the seventh when Swanson hit an RBI single to score junior Abbey Walewski, making the final score 8-2 in favor of the Pirates.
Freshman Madison Strunk pitched a complete game for Seton Hall, going seven innings and allowing just two runs on 10 hits and two walks. She was credited with the win, improving her overall record to 10-6 on the season.
The Pirates were not as fortunate against Mercer in Game 2 of Friday’s double-header. Seton Hall jumped to an early lead in the first after Head was hit by a pitch, forcing in Harrell. Freshman Emily Supercynski then drove in sophomore Alexis Walkden with a single down the right field line, giving the Pirates a 2-0 lead. This lead would not last, however, as Mercer exploded for six runs in the bottom of the first. Freshman Megan Lane hit a three-run home run down the right-field line to give Mercer the lead after just three batters in the first. Junior Maxine Rodriguez then hit a sacrifice fly to score freshman Lindsay Boynton, while sophomore Meghan Rud and junior Taylor Miller also recorded a respective RBI on a walk and a single. The Bears further padded their lead with a four-run third inning after a Boynton RBI single and a Quirisa Mauga three-run home run. The game was eventually called after the fifth inning, with the Bears taking a commanding 11-2 victory over the Pirates.
Each of the three Pirates pitchers let up at least three runs in their short outings, with no pitcher going more than three innings. Rodriguez pitched all five innings for Mercer, striking out two and walking three.
The Pirates resume the Mercer Bears Classic on Saturday, March 19. They will face off against Oakland University at 11:45 a.m. and Mercer University at 4:15 p.m.