MARCY, N.Y. – With the final out of Saturday's first game against Morrisville State, SUNYIT head softball coach Jess Skelton earned her 100th career victory as skipper of the SUNYIT squad. With the sweep on Saturday, Coach Skelton – just in her 5th year as SUNYIT softball coach – owns a career record of 101-61-0.
GAME 1: SUNYIT 7, Morrisville State 2
Fittingly, it was senior catcher Lauren Marleau (Prospect, N.Y. / Holland Patent) helping her coach to victory in game one. The four-year player drove home a game-high 4 runs on the game, finishing 2-for-3 with a double.
The top of the lineup amassed 8 hits for the Wildcats on the game, as the team's first four batters tallied a combined 6 RBI's and 6 runs scored.
It would be plenty for Wildcat pitcher Erica Hovey (Dexter, N.Y. / Jefferson CC), who improved to 12-6 on the season with a seven-inning, three strikeout performance on the mound.
After the game Coach Skelton's players presented her with a gift to commemorate the occasion.
GAME 2: SUNYIT 10, Morrisville State 0 (5 innings)
Riding the high of game one's post-win festivities, the Wildcats kicked it in to high gear for game two. Shortstop Lyndsey Brognano (Rome, N.Y. / RFA) led off the game with a double, and the Wildcats put three on the board in the first frame.
Pitching for the Wildcats in game two was Fallon Reinold (Holland Patent, N.Y. / Holland Patent). The first-year was unhittable – literally – through the first four innings. Heading into the fifth, in fact, Reinold had a perfect game going through the first four innings and was dominant, striking out the side in the 3rd inning.
While most pitchers welcome run support of any kind and at any time, in softball the relationship can be more complicated. As the Wildcats opened the game up with 7 runs in the bottom of the 4th inning, Reinold's bid for perfection received a strange obstacle: with a 10-0 lead, the 8-run mercy rule would go into effect after the Mustangs at-bat in the top of the 5th, provided the visitors scored 2 runs or fewer.
Of course no one can be sure of Reinold's thoughts heading into the top of the 5th, but with the chance for a true 7-inning perfect game dashed, the righty would be forgiven if a little wind were let out of her sails. As it happened, for the first time all game the Holland Patent, N.Y. native looked human, making an error on a groundball by the second batter of the inning, and then surrendering the game's only hit to Kendra Deno – a grounder up the middle.
With the perfect game and no-hitter out of the picture, Reinold retired the final batter for a ho-hum line of 5 IP, 1 H, 1 BB, and 7 K's, improving her record to 7-5 on the year.
The Wildcats will return to action at home tomorrow with a 1:00 pm start. SUNYIT will be celebrating Senior Day as they host Cazenovia, and fans are urged to get to the game early to catch the short pre-game ceremony.