CLERMONT, Fla. (March 14, 2017) – Following a day off on Monday, the Franklin Pierce University softball team played two contests while the entire Northeast dealt with a brutal Nor'easter. In Florida, the Ravens dropped two contests during day three of their spring break trip, the first contest a 5-2 decision to Seton Hill and a 9-1 setback to Bridgeport capped off the Tuesday Night twinbill. The losses were number five and six of the young Raven season while the Griffins and Purple Knights improve to 3-6 and 9-2 respectively
Game One: Griffins 5, Ravens 2 (Final)
Junior right hander Sabrina LoMonaco (Franklin, Mass.) took the ball in game one of the evening and hurled 6.2 innings while allowing five runs – three earned on nine hits while striking out three batters and issuing three free passes.
The Griffins broke into the scoring column during the top half of the second frame after Allie Harvey tattooed a single to right center field that plated Amanda Huff from second base, however Abbie Thrower was gunned down at home by junior right fielder Abbigael Cook (Smithfield, R.I.) to keep it a one score game.
In the bottom of the third the Ravens had a golden opportunity to knot up the score as Aubrey Bianco (Marlboro, N.Y.) and Jillian Ostrander (South Glens Falls, N.Y.) were hit by pitches that moved Bianco into scoring position with two down. Samantha Bonvino (Milford, Mass.) looked to plate her teammates, but grounded out unassisted to the first basemen to end the frame.
FPU tied the game at 1-1 in the bottom of the fourth as Mikaela Ballmer (Birdsboro, Pa.) smoked a single up the middle to lead off the inning. Ballmer advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt from Cassidy Sorenson (Billerica, Mass.). One batter later, Ashley Deyo (Dover, N.H.) ripped a ball to Griffin shortstop Christiana Skrabak who had problems fielding the ball as it rolled up her sleeve which scored Ballmer from second base.
In the sixth, the Ravens looked to take their first lead as Sorenson manufactured a two out single to right center. Sorenson promptly stole second base during the next at bat and pinch hitter Ashley Conway (Salem, N.H.) roped the ball to center field that put runners at second and third with two outs. Deyo couldn't drive in her teammates as she grounded out to third.
Seton Hill tallied four runs in the top of the seventh to gain a 5-1 advantage with the big blow being a double to right center off the bat of Abbey Suhoski which broke the deadlock.
The Ravens wouldn't go down quietly as two runners reached base via a walk and a pinch hit single by Ashley Mendillo (Milford, Conn.) that put runners at the corners with one down. Ostrander knocked in Bianco on a fielder's choice groundout which had Mendillo forced out at second base. That was the closest the Ravens could get as they fell by a 5-2 score.
Game Two: Purple Knights 9, Ravens 1 (Final – 5 Innings)
Ostrander was 2-for-3 with two doubles in the second game while Conway went 2-for-3 with a double and run scored.
The Ravens started out fast in game two as Ostrander and Conway smoked doubles to begin the game, but Ostrander was tagged out trying to stretch the two bagger into a triple. With one down, Conway advanced to third on a passed ball and Deyo responded by ripping a single into left field to drive home Conway and more importantly give the Ravens an early 1-0 advantage.
Bridgeport racked up three runs in their first at bats to push ahead 3-1 as Kamryn Beach doubled to right center that scored Meghan O'Leary and Jenna DiLorenzo. Samantha Sabor drove home Beach in the next at bat with a single, but Sabor was tagged out a second trying to gain one more base.
Junior Dominique Bisaccia (Yorktown Heights, N.Y.) led off the top of the second by striking a single down the right field line. She then advanced to second when Bianco reached first on an error by the Purple Knight shortstop. Junior Jaclyn Cortese (Upton, Mass.) stepped into the batter's box and reached first base via a fielder's choice that saw Bisacca, the lead runner, forced out a third base by the pitcher. Bonvino followed by depositing a single to right that loaded the bases for the top of the lineup. Bridgeport pitcher Alyssa Bua buckled down and got Ostrander and Sorenson to go down swinging for two clutch outs that concluded the Raven scoring threat.
With a three run cushion, Bridgeport scored three runs in the bottom of the third to increase their lead to 7-1. An inning later, the designated home squad chipped in another insurance run on an O'Leary RBI double to move ahead 8-1.
FPU had one more chance in the top half of the fifth as Ostrander led off the inning with her second double of the game. Following a punch out, Conway singled to left field that moved Ostrander to third. During the next at bat, Conway advanced to second on a passed ball, but Ostrander was cut down at the plate as she tried to score.
Tara Faford brought in Yalitza Rodriguez in the bottom of the fifth on a fielder's choice to ice the game.
The Ravens head back to the diamond tomorrow for two contests, the first against Northeast-10 Conference opponent Southern Connecticut State in a non-conference duel at 1:00 p.m. and they end the day against Philadelphia with first pitch set for 3:30 p.m.
For more information on Franklin Pierce Athletics, please visit the official website of Franklin Pierce Athletics (http://athletics.franklinpierce.edu). Also be sure to follow the Ravens through the Department of Athletics' official Facebook page (http://www.facebook.com/FranklinPierceRavens), its YouTube channel (http://www.youtube.com/franklinpiercesports) and its Twitter feed (http://twitter.com/FPUathletics). Fans wishing to purchase Franklin Pierce softball apparel can do so at the Department of Athletics' online store (http://athletics.franklinpierce.edu/store).