UNION – The Kean University softball team won a pair of games over FDU-Florham to sweep the non-conference doubleheader on Sunday afternoon, 7-1 and 6-5. The doubleheader sweep improved the Cougars to 19-11 overall, while FDU-Florham fell to 11-19.
Shotwell Powers Kean in 7-1 Win in Opener
Senior first baseman Cassie Shotwell was 2-of-3 and drove in three runs and junior right-hander Courtney Smyth struck out six batters to lead the Cougars to a 7-1 win in the opener.
The Cougars took a 3-0 lead in the bottom of the third inning on a RBI double by senior right fielder Allison Lizzi, sacrifice fly from Shotwell and run-scoring single from rookie catcher Gabi Ciacciarelli.
Kean added single runs in each of the next two innings to extend the lead to 5-0, before the Devils got on the board in the top of the sixth inning on a RBI single by sophomore pitcher Megan McInaw.
The Cougars tacked on a pair of runs in the bottom half of the inning when Shotwell drove in both runs with a double down the right-field line.
Smyth (8-7) scattered nine hits and one walk, as she allowed just one earned run in the game.
Ciacciarelli finished 2-of-4 with one RBI, while seven different Cougars scored runs in the win.
Lizzi Homers; Scores Game-Winning Run in Bottom of Seventh For 6-5 Win
Senior Allison Lizzi was 3-of-4 with a game-tying homerun in the fifth inning and scored the game-winning run in the bottom of the seventh inning to help lead the Cougars to the 6-5 win in the nightcap to complete the sweep.
Rookie third baseman Courtney Melchionna also finished 3-of-4 and drove in Lizzi with the game-winning run, while junior first baseman Katie Yard finished 2-of-3 with a homerun and two RBI.
With the game tied at 5-5, Lizzi led off the bottom of the seventh inning with a single up the middle. After advancing to second on the sacrifice bunt by Yard, the Devils intentionally walked senior pitcher Cassie Shotwell to put runners on first and second. FDU reliever Karla Babb was able to record the second out of the inning with a strike out, however Melchionna delivered one batter later with the single to left field to drive in Lizzi from second base with the game-winning run.
The Cougars took a 2-0 lead in the second inning, as the Cougars took advantage of two hits and one error to score both runs with two outs. Melchionna had a two-out single and advanced to third when junior shortstop Alicia Banz reached and advanced to second on an error. Senior second baseman Melissa Dietrich drove in both with the single to right field for the early lead.
In the top half of the third inning, the Devils quickly responded by loading the bases with one out, setting up the grand slam home run for sophomore Megan McInaw to give the Devils the 4-2 lead.
Kean got a run back in the bottom of the inning, when Yard drove in junior Lindsay Kennedy, who led off with a single up the middle.
The Cougars regained the lead in the bottom of the fifth inning, as Lizzi and Yard hit back-to-back home runs to right field to give the Cougars the 5-4 lead.
A half-inning later, junior catcher Megan Boyle led off with a solo shot to right field to tie the game and the Devils threatened to take the lead in the top of the seventh when freshman second baseman Christine Antoniotti led off with a single to right field, advanced to second on a wild pitch and moved to third on a sacrifice bunt. However the Cougars were able to get out of the jam with a pair of groundouts to escape the threat.
Shotwell (11-4) went the distance, scattering six hits and three walks, while striking out seven in the win.
For the Devils, Boyle finished 2-of-3 with one RBI and one run scored.
The Cougars also celebrated their annual Bat for the Battle in support of the Friends of Jaclyn Foundation, as they were joined by Frankel family. This past March, the Kean football team adopted 12-year old Tommy Frankel through the Friends of Jaclyn. Younger sister Nicole, who threw out the honorary first pitch prior to the doubleheader, will officially be adopted by the Kean softball team through FOJ’s sibling adoption program, Safe on the Sidelines. All proceeds from the t-shirts sales for the event will be donated to Friends of Jaclyn.
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