The College of Staten Island softball team dropped their early 8:30 am contest against Franklin College but bounced back nicely and picked up their biggest win of the season thus far against the University of Rochester. CSI fell 6-2 to Franklin College before improving to 5-3 on the year with a 3-2 (8 inn.) win over Rochester.
Game 1: Franklin College 6, Staten Island 2
Nicolette Trapani was handed the ball for the third time this season. Trapani was pitching well, keeping the Grizzlies off of the scoreboard. Her team behind her let her down in this game as they committed six errors which caused all but two of the runs.
It all began in the second inning when the Dolphins were able to get the first two batters out but struggled to find that crucial third out. Leading hitter for the Grizzlies, Baylea Lyons, was able to squeak one through the right side to get on base. Collins reached first and advanced Lyons to second via an error by Patricia Riches, her first of the year. Both of those players would come home after a single through the left side was misjudged by Vanessa Jioia and slid right underneath her glove, allowing the Grizzlies to go up two over the Dolphins.
Things only got worse for the Dolphins in the next inning as it started with Lalioff touching all four bases on a pair of overthrown errors. The Grizzlies would add on another run via a single to center field followed by another fielding error allowing the fourth run of the game to score.
Staten Island was able to regroup in the following innings but were unable to find that coveted run they sought after. The Grizzlies got their first error-free runs of the game when Tarver hit a two-run home run over the center field fence to add two more runs.
CSI refused to go out quietly however and were able to find their way onto the board in the top of the sixth. After getting two quick outs, Jacqueline Cautela reached first on a fielding error by the shortstop. Antoinette Galbo would hit an infield single and would advance to second on the attempt to get Cautela out at third after a smart base running play. With runners on second and third Gianna DeCesare came to plate and hit a blooper to shallow right field which allow the speedy duo of Cautela and Galbo to cross the dish.
Both teams would go scoreless the remainder of the game.
Trapani fell to 1-2 on the year after striking out one batter and allowing just two earned runs. Galbo finished a solid 2-for-2 with a walk and a run in the game while DeCesare led the way with two RBIs.
Game 2: Staten Island 3, University of Rochester 2 (8 inn.)
The Dolphins squared off against the University of Rochester for the second time in as many days at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex. The Dolphins faced driving rain in the early goings of the game but pressed on through the rain without any issues.
Just a day earlier the Dolphins took on the Yellowjackets and fell on the losing side of a 10-4 score line. In this go around the outcome was much different, one where the Dolphins showed true grit and persevered with a 3-2 win.
The University of Rochester opted to start Elizabeth Bourne in the circle instead of their ace, Sam Melecki. Bourne lasted 2.1 innings before being replaced by Melecki as the Dolphins were finding success with their bats.
In the bottom of the third, Jacqueline Cautela crushed a deep shot to left center for a lead off double which helped set up the Dolphins for their first run of the game. Antoinette Galbo executed a perfect sacrifice bunt which allowed Cautela to move over to third as the defense opted to throw Galbo out at first. Patricia Riches ripped a single through the left side and into the outfield for a single which drove home Cautela to put the Dolphins up 1-0 over the Yellowjackets.
Melecki would hold the Dolphins scoreless for the remainder of the regulation while Cautela would do the same and blank the Yellowjackets until the top of the seventh. Cautela was able to force the Yellowjackets’ lead off hitter to ground out. With just two outs to go in the game, tragedy struck. A routine ground ball was hit toward Kristen Meagher who misplayed it and allowed the runner to reach first base. With that error fresh in her mind, Meagher would commit a second error as she would drop a line drive and put two on the bases for the Yellowjackets.
The Dolphins inched closer to victory when Nicolette Trapani caught a line drive to put the Dolphins just one out away from revenge against the Yellowjackets. The University of Rochester would pinch hit and send one into the outfield which brought home and unearned run to tie the game up. CSI was able to close out the inning but not before allowing their opponents to knot it up and send it into extra innings.
The Yellowjackets would take the plate first and jump out to a 2-1 lead as they had the momentum in their favor. CSI would not go out quietly and would show up in a big way. Galbo would be placed on second base via the international run rule. Riches, who has been very clutch for the Dolphins during this young season, showed up once again and hit a single to right field which moved Galbo over to third. Riches was able to move to second when they tried to throw Galbo out at third unsuccessfully. The momentum was quickly moving in favor of the Dolphins as Jioia laid down a sacrifice squeeze bunt which saw her reach first safely.
With bases loaded and no outs the Dolphins were primed for success. Colangelo would strikeout, handing the Dolphins their first out of the inning. Ashley Notaro, the designated player, had the biggest hit of the season thus far when she hit a shallow single to right field which brought home Galbo and Riches for the games winning runs.
CSI improved to 5-3 on the year with the win, and comes home with a quality win over an opponent sitting just outside the NCAA’s Top-25.
Cautela finished the day 3-for-7 with two runs and a double while picking up her third win from the circle with a three strikeout, no earned runs performance. Riches finished 2-for-5 with an RBI and a run.
The Dolphins will return to action on Saturday, March 18 where they will host Purchase College starting at 1:00 pm barring the Tuesday snowstorm.