NEW BRITAIN, Conn. - The University of Saint Joseph softball team scored three runs in the fourth inning, two in the fifth and five in the sixth to plate 10 unanswered runs and come-from-behind to defeat the Elms College Blazers, 10-6, in a single non-conference game at the Central Connecticut State University softball field Wednesday afternoon. The victory is the fourth straight for the Blue Jays as they improve to 7-5 overall on the season. Elms slips to 3-10 with the setback.
The Blazers jumped on the Blue Jays early, tacking three runs on the scoreboard in the top of the first. Sophomore Madison Messier (Warren, Mass.) knocked a double to left field, and then moved to third base on a single from freshman Katelyn Sylvia (Southwick, Mass.). Sophomore Jeszy McGuire (Brimfield, Mass.) ripped a two-run double into left-center field to put Elms up 2-0. With two outs, senior Kacey Gifford (Suffield, Conn.) laced a RBI single to right field, scoring McGuire from third to create a 3-0 gap.
Elms added to their cushion in the top of the fourth as Messier brought home senior Tessa Cote (Granby, Mass.) and sophomore Kayla Doherty (Plaistow, N.H.) with a two-run double to left field. After advancing to third base, Messier scampered home on a wild pitch to build a 6-0 advantage.
The Blue Jays comeback began in the bottom of the frame as freshman McKenna Driscoll (Bristol, Conn.) launched a three-run home run over the left-center field fence to cut the Elms lead to 6-3. It marked her first career home run as a Blue Jay.
St. Joseph then made it a one run game, 6-5, in the bottom of the fifth after a RBI groundout from junior Sarah Ercoli (East Granby, Conn.) and a RBI single from sophomore Kara Klimaszewski (Naugatuck, Conn.).
USJ completed the comeback by loading the bases in the bottom of the sixth. Freshman Nathalia Vega (Waterbury, Conn.) walked to start the rally and then came home on a RBI groundout from freshman Taylor Marino (Middlefield, Conn.) to knot the score at 6-6. That was followed by a go-ahead RBI single through the left side from Ercoli to put the Blue Jays on top, 7-6. St. Joseph pulled away for good when freshman Amaria Sharon (Tolland, Conn.) stepped in next and blasted a three-run home run to center field to send the Blue Jays to the 10-6 win. It marks the second four bagger of the season for Sharon.
Sharon also picked up the win for the Blue Jays in the circle, her fourth consecutive victory in as many games, as she improves her record to 6-2 for the season. She came on in relief twirling the final three innings without allowing a run to keep the Blazers at bay and give USJ a chance for the comeback. She gave up just one hit, walked one and struck out one.
Sharon and Driscoll each blasted three-run homers in the victory. Sharon finished 2-for-4 at the dish with three RBI and three runs scored. Leadoff batter sophomore Morgan Skoly (Vernon, Conn.) went a perfect 2-for-2 with a triple, walk and two runs scored to set the table for the Blue Jays.
Messier led the Blazers at the dish, going 2-for-4 with two RBI and two runs scored. Doherty, Sylvia, McGuire and Cote each added a hit and scored during the contest. McGuire (1-2) took the loss in relief in the circle.
St. Joseph softball returns to action next when it travels to Lasell College for a Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) twinbill Saturday at Noon. The Blazers will look to return to the win column when they host Daniel Webster in a New England Collegiate Conference (NECC) doubleheader at Cheryl R. Condon Field Saturday at 3 p.m.