MARCY, N.Y. – The SUNYIT Softball Team (9-6, 4-0 NEAC) earned a split at home with non-conference opponent Hamilton College (6-11) on Tuesday, winning the first game 8-2 before falling in the second 7-2.
Catcher Lauren Marleau (Prospect, N.Y. / Holland Patent) paced the Wildcats with 4 hits and 4 RBI's on the day, while Kwanisha Jones (Philadelphia, N.Y. / Indian River) and Lyndsey Brognano (Rome, N.Y. / RFA) had three-hit games in the first (Jones) and second (Brognano) games of the double-dip.
The Continentals found similar production from behind the dish, as Sam Miller went 2-for-3 with a home run and a walk in Hamilton's game 2 victory. Miller's homer came in the top of the third, a two-run blast to put the visitors up 4-0.
The first game all came down to the third inning. Jones started things off for the Wildcats with a slap-single to lead off the inning. Jones's speed was a problem all game as she went 3-for-3 all on infield slap-hits.
After Brognano reached on an error by the Hamilton shortstop, Krista Pristera (New Hartford, N.Y. / New Hartford) then loaded the bases with a base-hit. After a strikeout by Marleau, third basemen Juleah Vedder (Dolgeville, N.Y. / Dolgeville) continued her bases-loaded heroics from the weekend (she hit a grand slam in a win over Morrisville St.) with a 2 RBI single to crack things open for the Wildcats.
Following a two-out RBI single by Bianca Brown (Utica, N.Y. / Utica-Proctor), designated-hitter Kimberly Tarasek (Lowville, N.Y. / Lowville) capped off the inning with a booming double to the fence, good for two more RBI's and a 5-1 lead for the Wildcats.
The cushion would be plenty for SUNYIT hurler Erica Hovey (Dexter, N.Y. / Jefferson CC). Hovey went the distance, scattering 8 hits for the complete-game win.
SUNYIT's fortunes would reverse in the second game, as Hamilton jumped out to an early lead and just kept piling on. The Continentals scored two in the first inning on a base-hit RBI by Miller and a sacrifice fly from Melissa Kaknis, and would go on to score 2 runs in three out of the first four innings, taking a 6-1 lead.
On the mound in game two for SUNYIT, Vedder didn't have her best stuff. The senior righty lasted just 3 and 1/3 innings, but was also plagued by defensive issues as of the 6 runs she gave up only the 2 runs from Miller's blast over the left field wall in the third inning were earned.
Five-foot-nine junior Amy Appel took over on the mound in the second game for Hamilton and picked up the victory with a smooth five innings of work. The right-hander from Mendham, N.J. allowed just 4 hits and 2 runs in her five innings, never allowing SUNYIT to string together consecutive hits – in effect keeping the Wildcats from putting together the big inning that so hurt the Continentals in the first game.
SUNYIT is back to conference action this Friday, going on the road for a doubleheader at Wells College. The first game is scheduled to start at 3:00 pm.