With strong winds and the threat of thunderstorms, the UR women’s softball team faced the St. John Fisher College Cardinals in a double header Tuesday afternoon. The ‘Jackets played extremely well, winning the opener, 11-9. UR then fell short in the nightcap, losing 9-8, in a very close game to the Cardinals.

In the opener, the ‘Jackets scored seven unanswered runs in the first and second innings against Fisher. Two hits in the first came from junior catcher Megan Winn and junior pitcher Beth Ameno. Both freshman outfielder Liz Slupinski and freshman infielder Erin Clark hit home runs in a four-run second inning for the ‘Jackets. The Cardinals scored five runs in the fourth inning off UR’s freshman pitcher Brittany Hylen, who relieved Ameno to start off the fourth.

Ameno re-entered the game in the fifth inning after the Cardinals had two on base with one out against Hylen. Ameno held the Cardinals from scoring with a strike out and a tap to the catcher, Winn. In the sixth, the Cardinals scored one run and had three hits. The ‘Jackets responded in the bottom of the inning with a run from Slupinski, who advanced around the bases with the help of a sacrifice bunt from senior outfielder Jessica Sorrentino and an RBI from senior infielder Alicia Citro. The Cardinals then tied up the game in the seventh, scoring three unearned runs. The ‘Jackets pulled out the win in the bottom of the seventh, coming up with two runs to take game one. Clark started off with a single and was sacrificed to second. She was then brought home with a two-run home run – her second of the year – from junior infielder Brittany Celeste.

As for the ‘Jackets pitching, Ameno earned her ninth win of the season, pitching a total of 5.1 innings. She allowed only eight hits, four runs, struck out five and walked two. The two star batters of the game were Celeste and Clark. Celeste batted .500 and had three RBIs. Clark went two for three, scored three runs and had three RBIs. Citro, Ameno and Slupinski each contributed with two hits to help the ‘Jackets edge the Cardinals. Overall, UR batted .428 (12 for 28) and had 10 RBIs.

In the second game, the ‘Jackets came up just short of claiming victory. In the first, Ameno hit a two-run homer to put the ‘Jackets up, 2-1, over the Cardinals. Fisher then scored six runs in the second inning – two of which were unearned – thanks to four hits and three errors from UR. The ‘Jackets got one back in the third when Ameno hit an RBI-double to bring Citro in. Citro had originally hit a single to get on base.

UR came roaring back in the fourth, scoring five runs to take the lead, 8-7. Runs came off of singles from Celeste, Slupinski and Sorrentino, a double from Winn and an RBI-triple from Citro. Fisher tied it up in the fifth with an unearned run, and eventually won the game off of a home run in the sixth that gave them a 9-8 lead.

Ameno, who took the loss, pitched all seven innings and allowed nine hits, nine runs, walked two and struck out four. She has a season earned run average of 1.59. Ameno also hit well for the ‘Jackets against Fisher, amounting two hits – including a two-run homer – and three RBIs. Other power batters from the ‘Jackets included Sorrentino with three hits, Slupinski, who had two hits and an RBI, and Citro, who had two hits, one of which was a triple, and two RBIs.

The Yellowjackets are currently ranked 17th in the nation according to the most recent National Fastpitch Coaches Association Division III poll. They moved to 10-7 after the split with the Cardinals. UR’s next match is this Thursday at 3 p.m. when they will be traveling down the road to play the Rochester Institute of Technology Tigers.

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