UR softball has started with a bang. Going into their third week of games, the Yellowjackets are at 8-6.
The Yellowjackets started their season against Ripon College, sweeping them 8-1 and 6-3 in a double-header.
UR then went on to face Washington University in St. Louis and Case Western Reserve University in their first games of the University Athletic Association Championships. They lost to Washington 7-0, but left Case scoreless 3-0.
Next, the ‘Jackets faced Emory University, ranked 11th in the nation. They were held scoreless 5-0 for six innings before a three run rally left them short of victory, 5-3. Despite the loss, the team didn’t lose their spirit and pulled a 7-2 victory over Brandeis the following day. With the win over Brandeis University still fresh in their heads, the ‘Jackets pushed for a win against Washington, but after two innings of rallying by UR, Washington took another win for the tournament, defeating the Yellowjackets 6-3.
The Yellowjackets went into the last weekend of spring break at 4-3 for the season, 2-3 for the tournament. On Friday, they ended the day with a split after beating Case 3-1 and losing to Emory 5-0.
On Saturday, UR defeated Brandeis 8-0. The win put them at 4-4 for the tournament, placing the Yellowjackets in 3rd place.
“We worked really hard and we showed that we are a powerful team both offensively and defensively,” said junior Rachel Askin, “but we also figured out [that] if we can just work on some of the little things, we can really be a powerhouse this year.”
Freshman Beth Ameno was named Rookie of the Year and also earned First Team Honors with fellow freshman Megan Winn. Ameno played in seven of the eight games and batted nine for 16, hitting one home run. She started her college pitching career with two wins and two losses.
Winn played in all eight UAA games as catcher, hitting six for 26. On the base paths she recorded three stolen bases and was not caught stealing even once.
“We faced really strong teams in the UAA,” said Winn. “The only two teams we lost to are ranked nationally, and we were able to play right next to them and compete with them. We proved that we are just as good as those teams and that we can play just as well as they can.”
Junior Jena Robertson and senior Laura Rubinchuk earned Second Team Honors. Robertson hit seven for 27 in eight games with one home run. She was starting pitcher in three of the five games she pitched. Rubinchuk went five for 18 in seven games with no errors.
This past weekend, the Yellowjackets played two double headers in New Jersey. They came away from the weekend with two splits – the first on Saturday to the College of New Jersey and the second on Sunday to Kean University – making them now 8-6 for the season.
In the first game against New Jersey, Ameno earned the win and senior pitcher Jen Moshier the save. An insurance run in the seventh inning scored by junior outfielder Nicole DiBello sealed a 3-1 win for the Yellowjackets. In the second game UR was held scoreless and lost 1-0.
In their first game on Sunday against Kean, the score was tied 4-4 in the seventh. Freshmen Megan Winn and Kristen DeCarlo brought in two runs bringing the score to 6-4. Kean managed three runs in the bottom of the seventh to pull off the win at 7-6.
In their second game against Kean, the ‘Jackets gained an 8-0 lead by their half of the third inning. By the fifth inning the score was tied 8-8, but with a single by Robertson UR had gained a lead and the win. The final score of the game was 10-8.
“I was impressed by how a lot of the freshman performed both on offense and defense [these last two weeks],” said Jen Moshier. “We still have some things to work on, but after Florida and New Jersey I am confident that we can be first in our league.”
The Yellowjackets opened their New York season on Tuesday against SUNY Brockport and their first home game is today, March 30, against St. John Fisher College.
Woods can be reached at email@example.com.