Bears split with Fredonia to open final weekend


POTSDAM, N.Y.— Junior pitcher Ashley Thayer was solid as the SUNY Potsdam softball team (11-19, 2-14 SUNYAC downed Fredonia State (9-22, 4-12) 5-3 in the first game of a doubleheader Friday afternoon. The Blue Devil bats broke out in the finale as the visitors cruised to a 13-4 victory in five innings.

In game one Thayer lived on the edge, but kept the Blue Devils off balance for the win. Thayer pitched out of a bases loaded jam in the top of the first and then stranded two more Fredonia runners in the second. The Bears got on the board in their half of the inning care of a fielder's choice from junior Megan Johnson that scored freshman second baseman Alexis Lerman. Freshman left fielder Samantha Cohn made it 3-0 with a two-run single the following inning. Thayer stranded two more in the top of the fourth and senior catcher Amanda Perry homered in the bottom for a 4-0 advantage. Thayer retired the side in order in the fifth, but got into trouble in the sixth. Two walks, an error and a two-run single from freshman Alyssa Morgan allowed the Blue Devils to get to within 4-3. However, Perry answered with an RBI double in the Bears half of the inning and pitched around a leadoff double in the seventh to close out the 5-3 win.

Thayer (5-7) allowed just three unearned runs while striking out five and walking five. Perry was three-for-four with three RBI's and a run scored.

Fredonia senior pitcher Danielle Shelp (1-6) allowed three earned runs in three innings pitched, while walking three and striking out one. Blue Devil third baseman Jamie Atkins was two-for-two with a run scored.

Both offenses started quickly in the second game. Fredonia senior Tina Schwartzmeyer opened the scoring with an RBI single in the top of the first. Atkins followed with another RBI single for a 2-0 advantage. Potsdam answered with RBI singles from Perry and freshman first baseman Katie Marsman to even the score. Fredonia exploded for seven runs on nine hits and two errors in the third to grab a commanding 10-2 lead. The inning saw Potsdam starting pitcher Megan Johnson give way to Thayer. Thayer was followed by freshman Carina Chirinko, who was then replaced by freshman Jordan Sarat. Sarat finally got the Bears out of the inning. Potsdam got two back in the bottom the third with RBI's from junior third baseman Molly McCuin and Cohn. The Blue Devils tacked on three more in the top of the sixth on two hits and two errors to seal the 13-4 victory.

Megan Johnson (4-4) allowed five runs on seven hits in two innings pitched. Chirinko allowed two runs in a third of an inning. Thayer was roughed up for three runs, one earned, in a third of an inning. Sarat closed out the game with three unearned runs in the final 2.1 innings. McCuin was two-for-two with a run scored and Marsman finished two-for three with a run.

Senior pitcher Raela Wiley-Delp improved to 4-7, striking out five and walking four in five innings.

The Bears close out the season tomorrow as they host Buffalo State for two contests starting at noon.