Drexel Softball Rallies in Ninth Inning For 5-2 Victory Over University of Delaware
NEWARK, Del. -- The Drexel University softball team scored four runs in the top of the ninth inning as the Dragons salvaged the final game of the weekend series with a 5-2 victory over the University of Delaware Sunday afternoon at the UD Softball Stadium.
The Dragons, who dropped a pair of 2-0 contests to the Blue Hens on Saturday, improved to 13-14 overall and 2-4 in the Colonial Athletic Association. Delaware, which had its seven-game winning streak halted, dropped to 16-17 overall and 4-4 in league play.
The team were knotted at 1-1 until the top of the ninth inning, when Drexel pushed across four runs to take control. Comfort Ahonkhai led off the frame with an infield single, and following a sacrifice bunt, Leticia Matsuoka and Vanessa Lightfoot each worked walks to load the bases. Shelby Taylor then drilled a pitch off the leftfield fence to drive home a pair, while later in the inning two more runs scored on a double to right by Liana Newton.
Delaware looked to answer in the bottom half, as Jessica Grisler led off with a single to right and eventually scored on a groundout by Sarah Bencivenga. However Taylor then got Carolyn Szymanski to ground out to second to end the game.
Taylor went the distance in the circle for the Dragons, allowing two earned runs on 10 hits with five strikeouts while improving to 9-5 on the year. Szymanski fell to 9-9 after giving up four runs in 4.2 innings of work, while UD starter Kelly Lupton was charged with one run in 4.1 frames.
Delaware struck first in the bottom of the second, as Lisa Stacevicz and Michelle McKinnon each singled with one out. After Morgan Schroll pinch ran for Stacevicz, she moved to third when Shelby Jones was hit by a pitch and crossed the plate when Grisler worked a bases loaded walk.
Drexel scored its first run of the weekend during the top of the fifth when Ahonkhai led off with a single to left, moved to third on a sacrifice bunt by Jennie Himler, and beat the throw to the plate when Matsuoka hit a groundball to second. The game remained tied until the top of the ninth, when the Dragons scored four times to go in front for good.
Bencivenga and Stacevicz each finished with two hits for the Blue Hens while Grisler was 1 for 3 with two walks, an RBI and a run scored. Both teams struggled with runners on base all afternoon, as Delaware stranded 12 runners while Drexel left 11 on base.
Delaware returns to action on Wednesday when the Blue Hens travel to Lafayette for a 3 p.m. doubleheader with the Leopards.