Softball Loses NESCAC East Division Series Opener to Tufts

Softball Loses NESCAC East Division Series Opener to Tufts

Hartford, Conn. – The Trinity College softball team lost to visiting Tufts, 9-0, in five innings on Friday afternoon in New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) East Division action at Campus Field. With the loss, the Bantams move to 6-17 on the year and 2-5 in league play, while the Jumbos remained undefeated and improved to 23-0 overall and 5-0 in conference tilts.

Tufts senior pitcher Allyson Fournier was stellar in the circle, going the distance and striking out 11 batters to earn her 13 win of the spring. The reigning NESCAC Pitcher of the Week allowed just two hits (both in the fourth inning) while keeping the Trinity hitters off balance all afternoon. On the opposite side, first-year pitcher Rachael Smith (Winchester, Mass.) was saddled with the loss for the Bantams. In five innings of work, Smith surrendered eight hits and eight earned runs to go along with four strikeouts.

Offensively, the Jumbos were led by sophomore Cassie Ruscz who went 1-for-1 with a home run two RBIs, two walks and two runs scored. First-year rightfielder Michelle Chisdak was 3-for-3 with three runs scored and an RBI hitting out of the eighth spot. The other jumbo to register a multi-hit game was junior shortstop Christina Raso, as she smacked two hits and had two RBIs.

Both the Bantams hits came with two outs in the bottom of the fourth inning, as junior leftfielder Erica Quinones (Trumbull, Conn.) broke up Fournier's no-hit bid with a line drive single to left center. With Quinones on first, first-year catcher Paola Otero (Lynn, Mass.) smacked a liner to the fence in right center that brought Quinones charging around the bases. After a perfectly executed relay from the rightfielder to the second basemen, Quinones was cut down at the plate to end the frame.

Otero's hit stretched her team-leading hitting streak to nine games. Over the past week, the freshman slugger is batting .480 (12-of-25) with a home run and two RBIs. Otero leads the Bantams in batting average (.361), slugging percentage (.475), on-base percentage (.451) and hits (22).

The Jumbos opened the scoring in the top of the first as Ruscz crushed a two-out two-run shot to center. After Fournier struck out the side in the bottom half, Tufts added two more runs in the top of the second as sophomore Carrie Copacino walked with the bases loaded and Bri Keenan followed with a sac fly to center. In the bottom of the second, Fournier once again struck out the side and in the top half of the third the visitors stretched their lead to eight with runs.

Trinity and Tufts continue their weekend three-game NESCAC East Division series tomorrow, April 18, with a doubleheader beginning at noon.