HEMPSTEAD, N.Y., April 16, 2011 – Hofstra used 31 hits to collect 27 runs in a doubleheader sweep over James Madison softball at the Hofstra Softball Stadium in Hempstead, N.Y. on Saturday. Hofstra won game one 11-3 in six innings before taking the night cap 16-6 in five innings.
The sweep dropped JMU’s record to 25-16 overall and 6-5 in the Colonial Athletic Association. Hofstra has won 18 of its last 19 to improve to 27-9 and 10-1 in league play.
In game two, freshman pitcher Brittany Jeans (Camano Island, Wash./Stanwood) took the loss to drop to 5-8. She gave up seven runs, five earned, on seven hits and a walk in 2/3 innings pitched. Junior right-hander Casey Mansfield (Suffolk, Va./Isle of Wight) made her first career appearance in the circle for Madison. She allowed nine runs on 10 hits and a walk in three innings of relief.
Olivia Galati earned the win after allowing one run on five hits and striking out seven in 4 1/3 innings of relief. Starter Erin Wade was touched up for five runs, four earned, on four hits and a walk in 2/3 innings pitched.
Junior shortstop Ashley Burnham (Danvers, Mass./Danvers) went 2-for-3 with a home run, a double, two runs and a RBI to lead the JMU offense. Sophomore first baseman Haley Johnson (Ashburn, Va./Broad Run) added two hits and a run scored while sophomore left fielder Lori Botkin (Manassas, Va./Osbourn) went 2-for-3 with a double and a RBI.
First baseman Sara Michalowski went 2-for-4 with a double, a home run, two runs scored and six RBIs to lead the Pride. Designated player D.J. Slugh added two hits, including a home run and four RBIs while left fielder Michelle Lavagnino had three hits, two runs and two RBIs.
The Dukes struck for five runs in the top of the first inning, highlighted by a home run to start the game from Burnham. It was the junior’s fifth lead-off home run of the season, which leads the country. JMU added runs on a RBI single by Botkin, two more on wild pitches and a fifth on a HU throwing error.
Hofstra responded with seven runs of its own in the bottom of the first. Michalowski capped the inning with a three-run double while Slugh added a two-RBI single.
Slugh provided two more runs for the Pride in the third on a home run.
The Dukes got a run back in the top of the fourth. Burnham led off with a double to left field. After Galati retired the next two JMU hitters, sophomore center fielder Jasmine Butler (Winter Garden, Fla./West Orange) delivered a RBI single to left to make it 9-6.
Hofstra put the game away with seven more runs in the fourth inning, highlighted by home runs from Michalowski and right fielder Tessa Ziemba.
In game one, Olivia Galati struck out 13 batters and walked none in six innings to earn the win. She improved to 17-6 after allowing three runs on four hits.
Senior right-hander Olivia McPherson (Liberty, N.C./Southern Alamance) took the loss to drop to 10-7. She allowed 11 runs, nine earned, on 13 hits and three walks while striking out four.
The middle of the Hofstra lineup did a majority of the damage for the Pride, combining to go 7-for-12 with four runs scored and five RBIs. Second baseman Jess Hirschbuhl went 4-for-4 with a double and a run while Michalowski had two hits, two RBIs and a run. Ziemba scored twice and added a three-run home run.
JMU’s four hits came from four different players, including senior catcher Katie Spitzer (Broadway, Va./Broadway) who went 1-for-2 with a home run. Burnham went 1-for-3 with a double and a run scored while Botkin was 1-for-2 with a double and a run.
The Dukes struck first, scoring a run in the top of the third. Botkin led off the inning with a double to left field. She moved to third on a sacrifice bunt by redshirt senior right fielder Chel’sea Ryan (Sandston, Va./Henrico) before scoring on a wild pitch.
A two-out hit in the bottom half of the third tied the score for HU. Center fielder Rachel Senatore reached on a fielder’s choice. She stole second and scored on a single to left-center by Lavagnino.
An error to lead off the bottom of the fourth inning opened the doors for a five-run Hofstra inning. Ziemba reached on the error and moved to third on a double by catcher Laura Valentino. Back-to-back walks plated the innings first run before Slugh hit a bases-clearing double to left-center field to open up a 5-1 lead. Michalowski capped the inning with a single down the line in right for the Pride’s fifth run of the inning.
Spitzer cut into the lead with a solo home run in the top of the fifth. The senior drove a 0-2 Galati offering out over the fence in right-center for her fifth homer of the season and the 18th of her career.
A walk helped set the stage for another run by Hofstra in the bottom of the fifth. Shortstop Trisha Dreslinski drew the walk and moved to second on a wild pitch before scoring on a double to right-center by third baseman Krista Thorn.
Burnham led off the sixth with a double to left-center field. She advanced to third on a ground-out and scored on a sacrifice fly by junior second baseman Caitlen Manning (Prince George, Va./Prince George).
A RBI single by Michalowski and a three-run homer by Ziemba put the game away for Hofstra in the bottom of the sixth.
JMU and Hofstra will conclude their three-game series on Sunday at noon from the Hofstra Softball Stadium.
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