PROVIDENCE, R.I. – The third-seeded Suffolk pulled within one of the tournament's top seed Johnson & Wales in the bottom of the fourth, but the Wildcats scattered nine runs over the final two innings and held the Rams to capture the 2017 GNAC Softball title, 15-5, Sunday afternoon at Scotts Miracle-Grow Complex.
SCORE: Suffolk 5, Johnson & Wales 15
RECORDS: Suffolk (29-17) | Johnson & Wales (34-8)
HOW IT HAPPENED
Suffolk had to dig itself of a 4-0 hole as JWU put one run on the board in the top of the first and three more in the second. A solo shot from Delaney Sylvester cut the margin to three in the home half of the second, but the Wildcats continued to pile things on with a run in third and fourth, respectively.
Jaclyn Flint took matters into her own hands as the sophomore blasted a two RBI jack over the center field fence to trim the margin to three, 6-3. JWU made a change on the mound as Jennifer Corona took over for Emily Gundrum. The fresh air sat down Jill Pulek and Sylvester, but Devlin Frost kept the rally going as the junior center fielded placed a single in center field. Madison Eucalitto followed with a double to left and the pair came around the bags thanks to a single to left from Lindsay Pagano that made it a one-run game. The Wildcats managed to keep things there as Corona fanned pinch hitter Evelyn Marquis swinging to send the contest into the top of the fifth.
The Wildcats matched Suffolk's four-run inning with one of their own as Suffolk found itself in a 10-5 hole after 4.5. JWU retired the Rams' side and added another run in the top of the sixth before Jaclyn Davis made her second change in the circle with Taylor Holmes taking over for Ali Yamakaitis, who came on in the top of the fifth.
JWU's advantaged blossomed to 15-5 after 5.5 and the Rams could not gain momentum off Eucalitto's single as the Wildcats hung on for the decision to claim their third straight conference crown.
- Eucalitto and Zulla put together 2-for-3, one run days to lead the Rams' offense.
- Flint's one hit went yard, bringing in two runs and the utility player, who saw action in the circle and at short, scored once.
- Sylvester, Frost and Pagano all had one hit apiece. Sylvester had one RBI and one run scored, with Frost scoring one run, while Pagano had two RBI to her credit.
- Three different arms tossed for Suffolk in Holmes, Flint and Yamakaitis. Holmes fell as the started let up six runs (five earned) on seven hits.
- Flint saw the most action for Suffolk, going 3.0 frames, and allowing two runs on four hits with one K.
- Yamakaitis worked 1.0 inning and gave up seven runs (five earned) on three hits and two walks.
- Gundrum got the nod for the Wildcats and tossed the first 3.0 frames, allowing three runs on three hits.
- Corona earned the win with a two-run, five-hit, one-walk, two-strikeout effort in 3.0 innings.
Diana Amendolara, JWU - MVP
Jennifer Corona, JWU
Brenna DuPerry, JWU
Alex Fantasia, JWU
Delaney Sylvester, Suffolk
Ali Yamakaitis, Suffolk
Lindsay Pagano, Suffolk
Megan Kelly, Albertus Magnus
Rachel Cataudellu, Albertus Magnus
Kylie McFadden, St. Joseph's (Maine)
Carla Tripp, St. Joseph's (Maine)