Colgate Softball Falls Back Down to Earth

Colgate Softball Falls Back Down to Earth

Bill Stoklosa

Colgate entered last weekend’s four-game set against Lafayette undefeated in Patriot League play, but ended up hitting a bump in the road as they dropped three-out-of-four to the Leopards at the Eaton Street Complex.

Things started off well for the Raiders in Game One of a doubleheader on Saturday. Going into the bottom of the third inning, Colgate was trailing 3-0. However, the Raiders finally got things going when sophomore Calla Yee and first-year Jessica Sabo both knocked in runs to cut the Lafayette advantage to 3-2. Lafayette extended its lead to 4-2 in the fourth, but the deficit did not last for long. In the bottom of the inning, junior Jessi Bentovoja hit an RBI double and later scored on a single by sophomore Kortney Hannah to square the score at four. In the fifth, junior LaPorscha Albert delivered another clutch at bat, sending a two-out pitch screaming out of the ballpark to give Colgate a 5-4 lead. The Raiders held on to the lead down the stretch thanks in large part to senior pitcher Kelsey Nordstrom. She retired Lafayette’s last 10 batters on the way to her 10th victory of the year, as the 5-4 score held up.

Game Two proved to be less successful for the Raiders. Colgate jumped out to the early lead in the beginning of the game by scoring three in the second to take a 3-0 lead. Two of the runs came on hits by first-years Kimberly Spinks and Kortney Hannah; the last run came on a Lafayette fielding error. Unfortunately, that was all the scoring the Raiders had in them. Lafayette broke through with four runs in the fourth off first-year starter Jesse McCarrick. The Leopards would add two more runs in the fifth and held on for a 6-3 victory.

The doubleheader on Sunday proved to be a disappointment for the Raiders. In the early game, Colgate trailed 2-0 after the top of the first, but scored two in the bottom of the inning on a home run by Hannah and a bases loaded walk. Lafayette took a 3-2 lead in the second, but Colgate battled back again in the third when an RBI bunt single by sophomore Vicky Ortengren tied the game. Unfortunately, Lafayette’s Sarah Price put Lafayette up for good with a leadoff homerun in the fifth. The Leopards shut out Colgate in the closing innings for a 4-3 win. Starter Kelsey Nordstrom was strong in defeat. She struck out seven, which gave her 115 on the year. Her total is currently the third best single-season performance in Colgate history.

In the nightcap the Leopards once again edged the Raiders. Colgate broke open a 1-1 tie in the second when junior Whitney Scott hit an RBI single to make the score 2-1. The lead held up into the sixth inning, when Lafayette tied the score at two. After the scoreless seventh, the game went to extras. In the eighth, Kristen Ruckno and Sarah Price each knocked in a run for the Leopards. Lafayette held Colgate in the bottom of the inning to secure a 4-2 victory.

Colgate went 1-3 in the series and dropped to 9-3 in the Patriot League. Head Coach Vickie Sax was absolutely clear that she was not satisfied with this weekend’s performance.

“At a minimum we should have split this weekend,” Sax said. “We only played well enough to be in the game and didn’t do enough to win them.The killer instinct was missing.If you want to win, you have to be willing to work for it, not sit back and wait for something to be handed to you.”

The Raiders will try to right the ship this weekend with a pair of doubleheaders against Lehigh at home. The doubleheaders start at noon Saturday and Sunday.