Western splits with Springfield, winning first 5-1, dropping second 8-0

From the desk of Steve Raczynski - Springfield SID

Box Score - Game 1
Box Score - Game 2

SPRINGFIELD, MA (Apr. 4) — A three-run home run by Kasey Kelly in the second inning allowed Springfield College to break open the second game of a double-header and ultimately give the Pride an 8-0 victory over 16th-ranked Western Connecticut State University this afternoon at a windy Potter Field. The Colonials prevailed in the first game, winning 5-1.

The split allows WCSU to finish the day at 14-4 on the year, while the Pride's record is now 9-8.

In game #1, the Colonials turned a Danielle Basciano wind-blown lead off triple into the game's first run in the opening inning. Jackie Zilnicki cracked a sacrifice fly to left field to score that run.

Neither team scored through the next three innings until WCSU hung four runs off four hits in the fifth to make it a 5-0 ball game. Basciano came through with a big hit once again, this time producing a two-RBI single to right field to plate Kristin Ferrante and Melissa Fracker. Zilnicki added another RBI off a single to left. Pinch-hitter Ashlie Morris came around to score after Alison Russo was thrown out at first by the right fielder.

Springfield's lone run came in the bottom of the seventh on a lead-off solo home run by Chelsea Bender.

Jennifer Joseph, now 4-2, took the loss for the Pride, giving up four earned runs off nine hits. She did record seven strike outs without walking a batter. Ally Rivelli had two of Springfield's five hits.

For the visitors, Magen Dargon had another succesful outing in the circle to move to 11-1 on the season. Dargon scattered five hits, giving up the one earned run, while racking up 10 strikeouts. Basciano ended the game going 2-for-3 at the plate, with two RBI and two runs scored.

In game #2, it was a much-different story as SC's bats came alive. The Pride scored seven runs in the first two innings of play. By adding another run in the fourth, SC came through with the 8-0 five-inning victory.

For Springfield, sophomore Ashley Marino allowed only three hits in the shutout performance. She struck out three and walked none in raising her record to 5-4.

In the first inning, after the first two hitters singled and walked, Kelly smashed a double down the left-field line to score one run. A second run scored on a wild pitch, and then Bender singled to knock in a third.

In the second inning, with one out, Kelsey Dunn and Christina Leader both singled. Rivelli then bunted one run home to make it 4-0. At this point, Zilnicki came on in relief of Stephanie Moss, who pitched just one and one-third innings. But Zilnicki was greeted by Kelly's three-run home run down the line in left, giving SC a 7-0 lead

In the fourth inning, Dunn led off with a double to right-center field. She reached third on an infield single by Leader, and then scored on a ground out to short by Rivelli.

Moss took the loss for the Colonials.

Up next, the Pride will host WPI for two in NEWMAC conference play Friday at 3:30 pm.