Courtesy: Fairfield University

Softball Advances In MAAC Tourney By Edging Siena

Courtesy: Fairfield University
May 11, 2017

NEW ROCHELLE, N.Y. – It seems to happen quite often that the player who makes a great defensive play comes up the next inning and makes an impact offensively. Such was the case for Angelina McGuire in today's MAAC Tournament game against second-seeded Siena College.

With one out and a runner on base in the fourth inning, McGuire sprinted back to the warning track, reached up and caught a ball destined to hit the fence and most likely bring home the game's first run. In the top of the fifth inning, McGuire stepped into the batter's box and ripped a triple to the right field corner to start a three-run rally that was the difference in this game.

The win sent the Fairfield University softball team into Friday's winner's bracket game against the winner of top-seeded and host Iona College and fifth-seeded Monmouth University. Game time is slated for 11 am.

With McGuire standing on third base and no outs, Amanda Ulzheimer, who was named All-MAAC and MAAC All-Rookie last night, lived up to those monikers by lining a base hit to left center that gave Fairfield a 1-0 advantage. Courtney Hankins advanced the runner to scoring position with a grounder to the right side. Back-to-back walks to Tori Reed and Kristen Ball loaded the bases, providing a chance for senior Giana Kinhofer to break open the game.

The outfielder did just that by lining the first pitch into right center field, chasing home Ulzheimer and Reed. Kinhofer tried to stretch the hit into a double but a perfect throw beat the runner and ended the inning.

Let's revisit McGuire's defensive play in the fourth inning because it was significant for another reason. One batter before Lauren Sabihon launched her ball to center field, Amanda Dodson led off the inning with a base hit. That hit would provide the Saints with their final base runner of the game as starting pitcher Destinee Pallotto would retire the final 12 hitter she faced to finish off the complete-game shutout.

Pallotto, who earned the win in the team's first tournament victory against Marist, worked her way around the plate and kept the Saints off balance for most of the game. The right hander scattered three hits and fanned seven batters to record the victory and keep Fairfield in the winner's bracket. Pallotto improved her MAAC tournament record to 4-1 with today's win and collected her first MAAC postseason shutout. 

In the box score, Ball and Ulzheimer each reached base three times with Ball picking up a hit and two walks while Ulzheimer was hit by a pitch to go along with two singles. The Stags left seven batters on base while the Saints left six on the base paths.  

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