NAPLES, Fla. – Led by an eight-run outburst in the day's first game, the Castleton University softball team picked up its first win of the season and ultimately earned a split during Friday's action.
Castleton is now 1-3 during the young season after it defeated a 2-7 Curry College squad by an 8-0 line and dropping a 6-4 game versus Nazareth College (6-4).
Castleton 8, Curry 0 (6 innings)
Led by back-to-back three-run innings, Castleton blew open an otherwise quiet contest beginning in the bottom of the third.
Devin Millerick and Sara Baker used savvy base running after earning their ways on base. Leading off with a single to left field, Millerick advanced to second on Baker's base on balls. During the next at-bat, each player advanced two bases via a passed ball and a failed pickoff attempt.
After Millerick crossed home, Baker followed her back to the dugout as Rachel Mirel reached base on an error. The latter continued to take advantage of the misplay, scoring on Bailey Cummings double into the outfield gap.
Timi Carone single-handedly jump-started the Spartan offense in the fourth using her speed. After reaching on a bunt single to the pitcher, she stole second and third before scoring on Baker's single.
Moments later, Calli Van Gorden singled to left, advancing Baker to second. Taking advantage of sloppy play, Van Gorden and Baker moved up a base, while the former eventually scored on a wild pitch. Splitting the plays, Tori Swaine tallied an RBI base knock to put her team up 5-0 at the time.
Leading 7-0 in the sixth, Van Gorden put the game on ice with a sacrifice fly to score Millerick and enact the eight-run rule.
Taylor Paquette bounced back from a pair of losses on Thursday to toss a dominant six-inning complete game. She surrendered just three hits while striking out five to pick up the win.
Nazareth 6, Castleton 4
Trailing 6-2 in the top of the seventh inning, Van Gorden put the Spartans on her back, launching a two-run homer to left-center field. Yet, despite the late rally, it was not enough as the Golden Flyers held off the late charge.
Tagged for six unearned runs, the Spartans were plagued by three errors, leading Nazareth to the victory at North Collier Park.
After the designated home team jumped out to a 3-0 lead through the first four frames, Van Gorden started what would be a spectacular performance at the plate. With Baker and Millerick on the bags, the sophomore laced a single to center to drive in both.
Rachael McCormick took the loss, pitching three innings without allowing an earned run. Paquette came into the game in relief and did not allow an earned run either with all of the scores being unearned.
During its final day of play in Florida, Castleton faces a couple of Midwest schools. Starting with North Central College (Ill.) at 9 a.m., the Spartans will later face The University of Wisconsin-Superior at 11 a.m.
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