Softball wins twice to open JU Invitational
Junior Ashley Iveson had four perfect innings in the win over Coastal Carolina
Junior Ashley Iveson had four perfect innings in the win over Coastal Carolina
The Dolphins’ pitching staff paced the JU softball team with a combined no-hitter to down Coastal Carolina, 3-0, and a three-hit shutout to drop Vermont, 4-0, on Friday in the first day of the JU Invitational at the JU Softball Complex.

Junior Ashley Iveson, freshman Sarah Sigrest and sophomore Jackie Samuels combined for 18 strikeouts and allowed just three hits for the Dolphins (5-9) in 14 scoreless innings of work. They also combined to sit down 40 of the 46 batters they faced today.

Iveson (2-3) earned the win over the Chanticleers (2-9) by retiring all 12 batters she faced and had four strikeouts in four perfect innings to start the game. Sigrest (3-5) closed out the first game with a pair a strikeouts and a walk in the final three innings before fanning a season-high 11 batters in five relief innings to earn the win over the Catamounts (0-2) in the night cap.

Samuels allowed a hit and struck out one in two innings against Vermont in her first appearance of the season.

“I’m extremely proud of the way our team played,” said JU head coach Amanda Lehotak. “It was nice to see our pitchers step up because they can throw like that every game.

“We are capable as whole of playing that well every game. Our goal now is to maintain this level of play and keep up the momentum rolling with each game.”

Offensively, sophomore Katie Kelly paved the way going 5-for-8 with two doubles on the day which extended her hitting streak to six games. Sophomore Kat Engler along with freshman Kayla Shavers and Amanda Schmidt each finished with three hits, while junior Kelly McKeon drove in two runs in the win over the Catamounts.

Against Coastal Carolina, freshman Brie Carmack recorded a one-out single to center field in the fourth inning to break up three hitless frames. Schmidt followed with an infield single to push Carmack to second. After a strikeout to McKeon, Shavers plated Carmack on a single to left field off Chanticleers’ starter and eventual losing pitcher Katelin Edwards to give the Dolphins a 1-0 lead.

Engler led off the seventh inning with a single to left field. Kelly and junior Ashley Mora each reached on bunt singles in the next two at-bats to load the bases. Senior Alexis Novak brought home Engler with a sacrifice fly to left field. Following a groundout to Carmack, Kelly scored to make it a 3-0 advantage when Schidt reached on a fielding error by Chanticleers’ shortstop Sarah Maples.

Iveson and Sigrest were perfect through the first five innings in the circle until Ashley Pisone broke through with a lead-off walk in the sixth inning.

Alyssa Tornatore popped out to Shavers on the first pitch after the walk, while Pisone was thrown out stealing by Schmidt on the following pitch in the next at-bat. Sigrest retired the next batter to end the threat and secured the win with a perfect seventh inning.

Edwards (1-8) took the loss for Coastal Carolina after allowing three runs (one earned) on 10 hits in seven innings.

In the second game, McKeon had a two-out, run-scoring single to left field in the third and fifth innings to give the Dolphins a 2-0 advantage.

Engler opened the sixth inning with a double to centerfield and moved to third on Kelly’s double in the next at-bat. Freshman Melissa Morales reached on a dropped throw by Vermont first baseman Jeanine Connolly, which scored Engler and gave JU a 3-0 lead. Kelly scored on a double steal in the next-at bat to round out the offense.

In the seventh inning, Catamounts responded by consecutive singles after two quick outs. Sigrest fanned the next batter to quash the rally attempt and earn the win for JU.

Vermont starter Caitlin Monahan (0-1) was tagged with the loss after giving up four runs (two earned) on 13 hits in five innings.

During earlier action, Marist opened the day with a 4-0 over Vermont before losing 11-0 in five innings to Coastal Carolina.

The Dolphins begin the second day of the invitational tomorrow against the Catamounts again at 2:30 p.m. JU closes out the day with Marist at 4:45 p.m.