Bears down Lions, Wolfpack in Florida
TITUSVILLE, Fla. – The SUNY Potsdam Softball team (3-0) opened their spring break trip with two wins over Ecclesia College (AR) and Madison College (WI) Friday afternoon.
In the first contest, the Bears used a strong offensive performance to defeat Ecclesia College 14-6 in five innings. Junior Molly McCuin ignited Potsdam in the first inning with a two run homerun to left center field. Seniors Amanda Perry and Heather Johnson would join McCuin with RBIs to give the Bears a 4-0 advantage after one inning of play. After a scoreless second inning, Ecclesia was finally able to crack junior pitcher Ashley Thayer for two runs. Potsdam answered with five runs off of the bats of McCuin, Brittany Thivierge, and Carissa Cornwell. Ecclesia would make a late push in the game but Johnson halted the Lions with a line drive up the middle to drive in three runs. The senior captain's three RBIs helped seal the 14-6 victory.
McCuin led the Bears, going three for three with six RBIs and one homerun. Johnson finished four for two with three RBIs. Thayer allowed four hits in four innings pitch and recorded one strikeout. Freshman Carina Chirinko recorded two strikeouts in her Potsdam debut.
The second game featured a tough dual on the mound until the Bears finally cracked the Madison pitching staff in the fifth inning. Freshman pitcher Jordan Sarat controlled the contest in her second career start. Sarat would go on to record a career-high 13 strikeouts and allowed only one hit in seven innings of play. Potsdam struck in the first inning when Thivierge drove in Johnson to take the early 1-0 lead. It wasn't until the fifth inning until the Bears finally solved the Wolfpack's pitchers. Perry would hit a hard single through the left gap to bring in teammates Samantha Cohn and Khalshia White. Sarat continued to dominate on the hill and would go into the final inning with a no-hitter. However, Madison would spoil the freshman's opportunity with an opening base hit. Sarat would close out the game with a pair of strikeouts to secure the 5-0 decision and earn her first shutout in a Bears uniform.
Perry led Potsdam, going two for four at the plate with three RBIs.
The Bears return to action tomorrow against Loras College at 1 p.m. and Carroll College at 3 p.m. The games will be played in Clermont, Fla. at the National Training Center.