KISSIMMEE, Fla. (3/4/17) – The Kean University softball team upset No. 16 Coe College and topped Simpson College 4-1 and 8-0, respectively, on the first day of action at the Rebel Spring Games in Kissimmee on Saturday.
Game One vs. #16 Coe
After falling behind 1-0, Kean scored its first three runs on one play: with the bases loaded, Jacqueline Riley lined a hard single into centerfield, driving in Olivia Zengel. In her haste to try to get Cayleen Rizo at the plate, the Coe centerfielder bobbled the ball and allowed both Rizo and Dana Knapp to come around, making the score 3-1.
Zengel started a two-out rally in the fifth inning with an eight-pitch walk, and Emily Sabo also worked a walk to put a runner in scoring position for Rizo. She came through with a ringing two-out RBI single to center to increase the cushion to 4-1.
In the fifth, Zengel stole an extra-basehit away from the Kohawks in leftfield with a running, over-the-shoulder catch near the fence for the best defensive play of the day.
Shannon McMahon went the distance for Kean in the circle for her second-straight complete-game win.
Game Two vs. Simpson
Kean jumped out to a 3-0 lead after a half inning in game two against Simpson. Sabo, Riley and Ratti all had singles sandwiched around walks by Rizo and Knapp to get ahead early.
That was all they would need as Taryn DiGiacomo continued the stellar start to her collegiate career; she pitched her second-straight complete-game shutout. This one featured four strikeouts and no free passes. She scattered five hits and did not allow a runner past second base.
The Cougars tacked on three more runs off the bat of Riley in the top of the second. Riley was batting again with the bases loaded and came through with a two-out single to drive in two, and she drew a throw to first that allowed the final runner to come around. Kean worked four walks over the first two innings, and they all eventually scored.
In the fifth Riley got on again and was pinch-run for by freshman Tatiana Yourstone. In the first play of her collegiate career, Yourstone raced from first to third on a 10-foot sac bunt that ended in a cloud of dust at third base. She then scored on an RBI single by Amanda Berezny.
Kean tacked on a final run in the top of the seventh when Ratti (pictured left) singled, stole a base and was knocked in by Emily Bissonnette.
Neither team had an extra-base hit in the game. Kean scored 12 unanswered runs to end the day and McMahon and DiGiacomo have now combined to allow just one run in 26 innings so far this season. Kean avenged a 7-0 loss to the Storm last season.
The Cougars will return to action on Sunday in Kissimmee with games against Lakeland University and Penn State Berks beginning at 1:30 p.m.