Lions break even at Salisbury University Invitational

The softball team went one up and one down last weekend as it took care of Ithaca College before falling to Salisbury University in the final game of the Salisbury University Invitational in Maryland.

First, the Lions handed the Bombers of Ithaca an opening round loss, 9-4. They were led offensively by sophomore infielder Rachel Greeby and sophomore outfielder Danielle Hagel, who each drove in three runs early.

The team jumped out to a quick 7-0 lead in the first three innings.

“Before the Ithaca game we had a chance to watch them play against Salisbury,” junior catcher Kelly Armstrong said. “When it was game time, we knew what it was going to take, so our at-bats were aggressive and the intensity level was high.”

“Everyone came out hungry,” she added.

After Ithaca pulled to within three with a four-run sixth inning, the College piled on two more runs of its own to make the final score.

On the mound, sophomore pitcher Ashley Minervini notched the victory after giving up three earned runs on four hits while striking out two over five innings. She now stands at 5-2 on the year.

Freshman pitcher Jamie Moir finished up the game for the Lions as she hurled two innings of one-hit softball.

“Overall, we came out great in the first game,” Hagel said. “We just became too relaxed and lost out intensity as the day went on.”

The Lions were defeated by the Sea Gulls of Salisbury 6-2 later that afternoon.

The Sea Gulls led for most of the game, but the Lions tied it up at two in the fifth inning after Armstrong scored on a wild pitch after a fielder’s choice. She also belted her first career home run in the third.

“It was one of my better performances on the year, if not the best,” Armstrong said. “But I would much rather have an average day with a win then a great day with a loss.”

Freshman pitcher Alex Sietsma took the loss, her first on the season. The young hurler tossed 5 1/3 innings, yielding four earned runs, three hits and five strikeouts.

With the loss, the Lions are now 8-6 overall on the campaign.

“We’re 8-6, which is good but not reflective of how we are playing,” Hagel said. “We had a lot of heartbreaking losses.”

“I was expecting to be in a better position,” Hagel continued, “but I’m not disappointed at all because as a team, we are continually gaining a lot of experience.”

Many of her teammates agree with this sentiment. Armstrong said she feels the squad is much more talented than its record shows.

“Our record definitely doesn’t depict the amount of talent and potential this team has as a whole,” Armstrong said. “If we consistently stay aggressive I can see our win column steadily increasing over the next month and a half.”

The team will begin the aforementioned stretch today as it travels to Allentown, Pa., to face Muhlenberg College at 3 p.m.

The Lions then head to Moravian College tomorrow to have their double-header at 3 p.m. The games were postponed from March 18.