CARLISLE, Pa. – Playing its first games since March 7, the Susquehanna softball squad split with host Dickinson on Tuesday night, winning game one 5-0 before falling in the nightcap 12-8.
SU (4-6) is now 34-11 against the Red Devils (4-8) since 1982. The Crusaders had a 10-game winning streak against Dickinson before dropping game two.
In the first contest, junior pitcher Morgan Lewis (Newtown, Pa. / Council Rock North) threw a complete game shutout, going all seven innings and allowing only six hits and striking out three. Lewis also blanked Dickinson last season (W, 7-0).
Senior Sam LaCoe (Clarks Summit, Pa. / Abington Heights) smacked a two-out pinch-hit two-run homer in the top of the seventh to add insurance to the SU lead. Alyssa Cantalini (Kitchener, Ontario / St. David Catholic Secondary) and Amanda Neveroski (Toms River, N.J. / Toms River North) both had two hits apiece as the Crusaders finished with seven hits in the opener.
Game two was a high-scoring affair, with a total of 20 runs and 28 hits but unfortunately SU came out on the losing side, falling 12-8. Five players had two hits to lead the Crusader offense with senior Brittany Devlin (Furlong, Pa. / Central Bucks East) and Cantalini recording two RBI each. With her two hits on the night, Devlin now has 100 hits in her career.
Freshman Jamie Fesinstine (Long Valley, N.J. / West Morris Central) suffered the loss, throwing 5.2 innings, surrendering four earned runs and striking out three Red Devils.
The Crusaders jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the top of the first. Brianna Murphy (Hazlet, N.J. / Mater Dei Prep), Cierra Omlor (Salem, N.J. / Salem) and Neveroski led off with consecutive singles and Sarah Bush (West Windsor, N.J. / West Windsor Plainsboro North) and Devlin would later record RBIs as SU claimed the early advantage.
But Dickinson responded by plating two in the bottom of the frame to get within one run, 3-2. The Red Devils knotted the contest at 3-3 in the second inning.
However, SU would reclaim the lead in the top half of the third, going up 4-3. Cantalini ripped a lead-off triple and would eventually touch home on an RBI groundout by Devlin.
But yet again, Dickinson tied the game in the bottom of the inning. The Red Devils took their first lead of the contest in the fourth before the Crusaders responded with a pair of runs in the sixth to take a 6-5 edge.
With two outs, Cantalini cracked a two-run single, scoring Anna Heggenstaller (Liverpool, Pa. / Greenwood) and Omlor to give the lead back to the Orange & Maroon.
But that was the last lead for SU as Dickinson would score seven runs in the bottom of the sixth to take a commanding 12-6 lead. The Crusaders attempted a rally in the seventh and scored twice with RBIs by Murphy and Omlor, but eventually fell short.
SU is scheduled to host Misericordia on Thursday at 3 p.m. before hosting Landmark Conference foe Moravian on Saturday at 1 p.m.