LAKEWOOD, N.J. (Apr. 23, 2018) - Lauren Pascual tossed a gem in the pitcher's circle and ToniMarie Valeriano drove in four RBIs as the Queens College softball team split a doubleheader with Georgian Court on Monday (Apr. 23) at SEI Investments Field in Lakewood, N.J.
The Knights (13-21) took the first game by a 7-3 score as the host Lions (22-19) bounced back with a 4-1 win in the proverbial nightcap.
Game One: Queens (NY) 7, Georgian Court 3
GCU took the early lead on the Knights with a run in the bottom of the first; Caitlin Hughes doubled and scored on a sacrifice fly from Malaya Black. The Knights' offense picked up the tempo in the top of the third inning as Valeriano smacked a one-out double down the left-field line to score Briana Schippell and Jessica Hickey to put QC ahead 2-1. In the bottom of the frame, Hughes homered off of Pascual to tie the score but the Knights took the lead for good in the top of the fourth on a lead-off home run by Danielle D'Angelo. Pascual singled immediately after and walks to Schippell and Hickey loaded the bases for another Valeriano double to bring home two runs. Hickey was thrown out at the plate to end the frame, but Queens led 5-2 at that point as Pascual cruised in the circle. An RBI single from Mikaela Power brought Georgian Court within two runs at 5-3 after six innings but D'Angelo's infield single brought home a run in the top of the seventh and the freshman would score after Pascual reached on an error to put the game firmly on ice.
Valeriano was 3-for-4 from the lead-off spot, driving in four runs as D'Angelo went 2-for-4 with two runs batted in. Schippell and Hickey were the real nightmares at the plate for GCU starter Taylor Baloga as the two combined for just one official at-bat but drew a combined five walks in the game. Pascual, meanwhile, threw a terrific seven innings in picking up her first win of the season. She yielded three runs on seven hits and struck out five to record the victory for the Knights.
Game Two: GCU 4, Queens (NY) 1
Vanessa Juengerkes got the ball to start game two for Queens against Marissa Trezza; however, the GCU starter lasted just two innings-plus and was replaced by Jessica O"Neil. Regardless, the game was a scoreless affair through the first four-and-a-half innings as neither offense could figure out the opposing pitcher. Queens had chances to score in the first and third innings, both times with Valeriano at third base but Georgian Court struck in the fifth inning as Haley Jones swatted a two-run homer to put the hosts ahead by a 2-0 score. The Knights made a charge in the top of the sixth inning as Hickey and Gabriella Russo both collected one-out singles before Alyssa Delaney and Valeriano were hit in consecutive at-bats to send QC's first run home. The Knights, however, could not score another run as the Lions took the nightcap.
Queens will conclude East Coast Conference play on Tuesday (Apr. 24) with a doubleheader at NYIT beginning at 2 p.m.