Monks Complete GNAC Weekend Sweep with Two W's at Norwich

Monks Complete GNAC Weekend Sweep with Two W's at Norwich

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NORTHFIELD, Vt.  – The Norwich University softball team saw its six-game winning streak come to an end with a pair of losses to Saint Joseph's College (Maine) on Sunday afternoon in Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) action on Sabine Field.

Norwich (8-8, 2-2 GNAC North) went back and forth in an offensive battle in Game 1, ultimately falling 9-8, before dropping Game 2 by a score of 9-1 to the Monks (6-11, 4-0 GNAC North) who stayed perfect in league action on the season.

The Cadets led 1-0 early, then trailed 3-1 only to rally to take a 4-3 after three innings, but a costly four-run top of the fourth inning, including a throwing error that led to a run proved to be the difference in the game to snap Norwich's win streak and deal the Cadets their first home loss of 2019.

The meat of the Norwich lineup with the two through five hitters went 9-for-15 to do most of the damage offensively, led by two hits and three RBIs from cleanup hitter Naomi Rinaldo (Middlefield, Conn.). Freshman Dara Kelly (Chesterfield, N.J.) went 3-for-4 at the plate with a team-leading three runs scored and a RBI coming on a triple in the bottom of the fourth inning that cut the Saint Joseph's (Maine) lead to 7-6.

Katie Reid (Gold Canyon, Ariz.), Emily Oliver (Sagamore Hills, Ohio) and Brittany Vandergroef (Lodi, N.J.) all tallied RBIs in Game 1 as well.

Vandergroef took the loss in the circle, suffering her first collegiate loss after going all seven innings and giving up seven earned runs on nine hits and four walks.

The Saint Joseph's (Maine) offense was led in Game 1 by a huge 3-for-4 effort from Melodie Bailey, who also had a game-high four RBIs, including a two-run single to centerfield in the top of the fourth inning that broke a 4-4 tie. Junior second baseman Libby Pomerleau also went 2-for-4 at the dish with two runs scored and a RBI from the leadoff spot to pace the Monks' offense.

Kate Whitney outlasted Vandergroef to earn the victory in Game 1 and improve to 3-5 on the year for the Monks. She gave up six earned runs on 10 hits and four walks.

Game 2 was all Saint Joseph's (Maine) from the opening pitch as Pomerleau once again kick started the Monks' offense with a single to centerfield to open the game and then SJC never looked back, pushing across four runs in the first inning.

The Cadets committed one error to aid the inning but Meghan Elliott, Bailey and Megan Eagleston all had RBIs for the Monks to build up the early 4-0 lead.

Norwich got a run back in the bottom of the second inning with Makenna Wade (Saint Johns, Fla.) picking up a sacrifice fly RBI to centerfield to score Rinaldo for the Cadets' only run of Game 2.

That's as close as Norwich would get though as the Monks tacked on two more in the fourth, one in the sixth and two more in the seventh to cruise to the victory.

Pomerleau continued her impressive day going 3-for-4 in Game 2 with a RBI. Elliott added three hits as well and Grace Chadbourne had a two-RBI double in the top of the seventh for the Monks as well.

Caitlyn King kept Norwich's batters off balance all game, throwing a complete game, four-hitter and allowing one unearned run while striking out two. King improved to 3-5 on the season.

Oliver was saddled with the loss for the Cadets, falling to 6-4 on the year after giving up 14 hits and six earned runs, while striking out five.

Saint Joseph's will host Thomas College Tuesday in a non-conference doubleheader set to start at 5:00 PM.

Norwich will look to get back on track next Saturday, April 13 when it travels to Suffolk for another GNAC doubleheader. The Cadets will host Emmanuel on Sunday, April 14 at 1 p.m. and 3 p.m.






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Founded in 1912 by the Sisters of Mercy in Portland, Maine, Saint Joseph’s College is Maine’s Catholic liberal arts college in the Mercy tradition. We are inclusive of all faiths, including no faith. The 474-acre campus, located on the shore of Sebago Lake in Standish, Maine offers more than 40 undergraduate programs and a Division III athletic program to a population of approximately 1,000 on-campus students. A pioneer of distance education since the 1970s, the College also provides online certificates and undergraduate and graduate degrees for thousands more working adults who reside in more than 20 other countries. In 2015 the College was selected by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching to receive its Community Engagement Classification, highlighting the College’s focus on community service throughout its mission and daily interactions within local, regional, and global communities. In 2018, Princeton Review recognized SJC as one of its “Green Colleges” for its sustainability initiatives. Learn more at