WASHINGTON, D.C. - The Catholic University softball team split with Landmark Conference opponent University of Scranton on Saturday. The Cards fell in game one, 2-0, before rallying in game two to secure a 6-5 victory.
Game 1: Scranton 2, Catholic 0
The Cardinals struggled to get their offense going in game one, recording only two hits. Junior Sabrina Scott started in the circle, throwing a complete game, giving up two runs on six hits.
The first two innings were played evenly by both teams, recording only one hit each. Sophomore Juliet Lodes hit a single in the top of the second.
Scranton scored two runs off of three hits in the bottom of the frame to take the lead.
The Cardinals could not wake up the bats in the remaining four innings, allowing the Royals to secure their third Landmark Conference win of the season.
Game 2: Catholic 6, Scranton 5
Game two was a different story for the Cardinals, as they scored six runs on 10 hits. The sophomore duo of Juliet Lodes and Allie Lajeunesse combined for four of the team's hits, each going two for four at the plate. Junior Claire Sturek had another strong performance, throwing her third complete game of the season and the fourth of her career.
The Cards came out of the gate in the top of the first scoring one run on two hits. Freshman Bella Ronca led off the inning with a walk before sophomore Taylor Forgen laid down a sacrifice bunt to advance Ronca to second. The freshmen then advanced on a wild pitch to third. Lodes came to the plate with a clutch single to left field to score Ronca and give the Cardinals a quick lead.
Sturek and her defense then went to work posting back to back three up three down innings.
In the top of the fourth, Catholic tacked on one more run to take a 2-0 lead. Sophomore Giselle Diaz got things started by drawing a walk. Junior Kacie Badolato followed with a base hit bunt before junior Shannon Harrington placed a sacrifice bunt to advance both runners. Diaz then scored by stealing home.
The Royals responded in the bottom of the inning, scoring one run on an Alich triple to right center.
The fifth inning was quiet for both teams, but the Cardinal's offense picked up again in the top of the sixth. Sophomore Makayla Czan drew a walk before Diaz put down a sacrifice bunt to move Czan into scoring position. Harrington then hit a double down the left field line to score Czan and give Catholic a 3-1 advantage.
The Cards extended their lead in the top of the seventh when Forgen drew a walk and scored off of a Lodes single. Lajeunesse reached on a fielder's choice before Czan singled to center field to put runners on first and second. Sophomore McKenzie Plante entered the game as a pinch-runner for Lajeunesse. Diaz loaded the bases with a single through the left side, and Badolato scored Plante with a single down the right field line to go up 6-1.
Scranton put up a good fight in the bottom of the inning. With two outs the Royals scored four runs off our three hits but fell short as Sturek struck out the final batter to give Catholic their ninth win of the season.
Catholic returns to action at home on Wednesday, April 3 as the Cards host Hood College for a nonconference doubleheader starting at 3:00 p.m.