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Emily Neal had three hits and five RBI during Friday's wins over Campbell and UNC Greensboro.
Courtesy: Mark Campbell

Blue Hens Defeat Campbell, UNCG on First Day of UNCG Spartan Classic

Courtesy: Delaware Athletics
Release: 03/10/2017
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Campbell-UD Boxscore
UD-UNCG Boxscore

GREENSBORO, N.C. -- The University of Delaware softball team won a pair of high-scoring games on Friday afternoon as the Blue Hens opened play at the UNCG Spartan Classic with a 9-8 win over Campbell and an 8-7 triumph over UNC Greensboro.

The Camels (14-11) jumped out to a 5-0 lead after scoring one run in the top of the first and two more in the third and fourth frames, before Delaware (4-12) got on the board in the bottom of the fourth when Alyshia Dellatore led off with a walk and scored on a double to leftfield by Leanna Gearhart.

Anna Steinmetz walked to open the bottom of the fifth, before Devon Steiner belted a two-run homer to center as the Blue Hens closed within 5-3. After Giovanna Kolofer reached on an error and Dellatore was hit by a pitch, both runners came around to score on a triple by Emily Neal as Delaware pulled even. One out later Gearhart legged out an infield single, and after she stole second, Neal crossed the plate on a throwing error by the Campbell catcher. Mariah Kondravy then capped the rally with an RBI double, driving home Gearhart to make it a 7-5 game.

The Camels answered back in the top of the sixth, as after Abby Perryman worked a bases loaded walk, Megan Mozingo drove home a run with a single and Melissa Tuller put Campbell back in front with a sacrifice fly. However the Blue Hens immediately responded in the bottom half when Steiner drilled her second home run of the game to pull Delaware even at 8-8. Kolofer then ripped a double to rightcenter, and after she moved to third on a sacrifice bunt by Dellatore, she scored the go-ahead run when Neal singled up the middle.

Blue Hen freshman Kat Morris then took over in the circle and retired Campbell in order during the top of the seventh to pick up her first career save.

Taylor Curran, who allowed three runs in 2.2 innings of relief, earned her first victory of the season in the circle for Delaware. Gearhart finished 3 for 4 at the plate, while Steiner and Neal each added two hits and three RBI.

The Blue Hens then took control against UNCG (12-8) in the top of the first inning as Steiner ripped a two-run double, Dellatore delivered an RBI triple and Neal added a run-scoring single to give UD an early 4-0 lead. After the Spartans got a run back in the bottom half, Steinmetz singled home Kolofer in the second to increase the lead back to four.

UNCG scored single runs in the second, third and fourth innings to pull within one, but Delaware answered back with three runs in the top of the fifth inning. Neal hit a sacrifice fly to drive home Kondravy, and after Mattie Nuccio singled home Julia Solderitch, Dellatore scored on a double steal to make it an 8-4 game.

The Spartans again made it a one-run contest in the bottom of the sixth, as Rachel McClaskey hit a solo homer and Emily Acquaviva added a two-run double to cut the margin to 8-7. UNCG then loaded the bases on three two-out walks in the seventh, but Curran struck out Acquaviva looking to end the game.

Morris earned her first career victory for the Blue Hens after allowing three runs in 2.2 frames in the circle, while Curran recorded the save with 1.1 scoreless innings of relief. Steinmetz went 3 for 3 at the plate for Delaware, while Steiner and Neal drove home two runs apiece.

Game Notes:
• Steiner posted the first two-homer game by a Blue Hen since Steinmetz vs. Elon in the 2016 CAA Tournament
• Gearhart stole two bases and now has 64 steals for her career, two shy of the school record
• Delaware evened the all-time series with Campbell at 2-2 during the teams’ first meeting since 1996
• UD improved to 3-4 vs. UNCG in school history
• The Blue Hens will face Winthrop at 9:30 a.m. and Campbell at 12:30 p.m. on Saturday
• Delaware’s game scheduled for Sunday vs. Winthrop has been canceled due to expected inclement weather

FOR MORE INFORMATION: Contact Kevin Tritt at: ktritt@udel.edu (email) / 302-831-8715 (office) / 302-383-5005 (cell)

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