BOSTON – Coming off an 8-0 shutout over Emerson, the Suffolk softball team sets its sights on GNAC action as the Rams make the trip to Nashua, New Hampshire, Sunday, April 2 for its conference opener at Rivier. First pitch of the doubleheader is scheduled for 1 p.m.
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LAST TIME OUT
Behind concrete pitching from Taylor Holmes and solid hitting from Jill Pulek and Delaney Sylvester the Suffolk softball team collected an 8-0 shutout win over Boston Commons neighbor Emerson Thursday night at Rotch Field. The win marks head coach Jaclyn Davis' 101 on the Rams' bench making the fifth-year head coach the program's winningest in the 33-year history.
RUNDOWN ON THE RAMS
Suffolk has splits its last two twin bills – at Salem and Emerson – to bring a 6-8 record in GNAC action.
Jill Pulek has been a force at the dish for the Rams with the sophomore not only producing team leading numbers, but sitting amongst the top in the league. The Cheshire, Connecticut product paces Suffolk's pack in batting average (.510), on-base percentage (.510), RBI (17), and homers (4). She leads the conference and the squad in slugging percentage (.922), hits (26), and doubles (9). Pulek's 10 runs are good for second on the squad behind Devlin Frost's 13 with the junior center fielder batting .320 for the Rams this season falling second on the team in hits (16) and RBI (9).
Ashley Zulla has had a standout freshman campaign thus far, sitting second on the team in average .423, on-base percentage (.444) and slugging percentage (.846) with 11 hits, five RBI and nine runs scored. Delaney Sylvester's hitting .326 and slugging .400 on 14 hits, nine RBI and six runs scored.
In the pitchers circle the tandem of Taylor Holmes and Ali Yamakaitis have excelled for the Rams. Yamakaitis boasted a 2.45 ERA heading into the weekend through 45.2 innings of work with 27 runs (16 earned) allowed on 48 hits and 34 Ks. Holmes, meanwhile, had a rough going, but has returned to her form in New England. The junior twirler holds a 6.28 ERA in 29.0 innings of work including a complete-game, eight-hit, nine-strikeout shutout at Emerson.
Rivier, who is set to open its GNAC campaign at Emerson Saturday carries a 6-6 record into the weekend action after splitting a doubleheader against Fisher; taking game one 13-4 in five innings and falling 24-16 in the nightcap.
Three everyday starters are producing over .300 averages at the dish for the Raiders with Taylor Roswell's .389 leading the way. The freshman has knocked seven hits including two doubles and two bombs for 10 RBI and six runs. Senior Shaylyn Freitas, who hits .333, leads the team in hits (12), RBI (11) and runs scored (10). Kasey Smith has matched Freitas runs total (10) going .250 at bat in her rookie season.
Seven different arms have taken the circle for Rivier this season. Kendall Stanton has seen the most time, going 25.1 innings for a 4.42 ERA, allowing 25 runs (16 earned) off 34 hits and a team-high 13 strikeouts. Kerri Hegarty brings in the team-best ERA at 3.50 in 14.0 innings of work giving up 13 runs (7 earned) on 16 hits and the sophomore has sat down seven batters.
INSIDE THE SERIES
Suffolk has taken the last seven meetings versus Rivier to hold a 27-22 all-time series lead against the Raiders.
Jill Pulek has made the most of her trips to the plate this season with the sophomore producing team high numbers in nearly every offensive category including batting average (.510), on-base percentage (.510), slugging percentage (.922), RBI (17), hits (26), doubles (9), homers (4) and total bases (47).
Her nine doubles are one shy of her 2016 total (10), while her four homeruns, which came over the last three games, are half the amount she produced as a freshman. Pulek is not only the first Ram to string three straight games together with a long ball in the Jaclyn Davis era, but the first Suffolk softball player to do so, joining an elite group of just 25 Division III athletes to knock a bomb in three or more games.
Jaclyn Davis, who earned her 100th victory at Salem State March 25, added more milestones to her coaching resume March 30 as she became the winningest coach in Suffolk softball's 33-year history thanks to an 8-0 cleansheet over Emerson, which gave her win 101. Davis surpasses Elaine Schwagge's 100 total from 2001-05.
With the 11-6 victory at Salem State, Jaclyn Davis picked up her 100th win on Suffolk's bench. She is just the second coach in the Rams' 33-year history to eclipse the 100-win mark. Davis joins Elaine Schwagger (100-82) as the only two coaches in Suffolk's softball annals to win 100 games in their careers at the helm of the program.
GNAC CORVIAS ROOKIE OF THE WEEK
Ashley Zulla of the Suffolk softball team has been named the GNAC Corvias Rookie of the Week after batting 0.625, slugging 1.375 and putting together a 0.667 on-base percentage during a doubleheader at Salem State Saturday, the league office announced Monday afternoon.
MORE READING: Zulla Named GNAC Corvias Rookie of the Week
GNAC CORVIAS PITCHER OF THE WEEK
In the first week of action, Ali Yamakaitis threw her way to GNAC Corvias Pitcher of the Week March 13 with the junior going 2-0 in a pair of starts with a 0.54 ERA.
MORE READING: Yamakaitis Earns GNAC Corvias Pitcher of the Week
Pending weather and field conditions, Suffolk is set for its home opener Tuesday, April 4 when Curry comes to East Boston. The two-game series is scheduled for a 4 p.m. first pitch.