NORTH MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (March 11, 2017) – The second inning was a charm for the Rutgers University-Camden softball team on the opening day of its semester break trip to the Fastpitch Dreams Spring Classic.
The Scarlet Raptors scored a program-record 13 runs in the second inning of their opener on the way to a 19-1 victory over Alfred State (Alfred, N.Y.) and notched nine runs in the second inning of the nightcap to beat Johnson State (Johnson, Vermont), 15-0. Both games lasted only five innings.
Sophomore pitcher Jessica Thompson (Pedricktown, NJ/Penns Grove) tied a program record with three doubles in a game in the opener, while allowing only five hits and one unearned run. In the nightcap, sophomore pitcher Kendra Pfister (Dacula, GA/Dacula) hurled a one-hit shutout. Both pitchers raised their records to 2-1.
The Scarlet Raptors (4-2), who collected 26 hits on the day, return to action Sunday at the Fastpitch Dreams Spring Classic. They face Spalding University (Louisville, Ky.) in a 9:30 a.m. game before playing Alfred State again, this time at 11:30 a.m.
Rutgers-Camden 19, Alfred State 1
The Scarlet Raptors took advantage of six hits, six walks, a hit batsman and an error to plate 13 runs in the second inning, breaking the school mark of 12 scored in the second inning of the nightcap of a doubleheader against New Jersey City University on April 30, 2016. The Raptors won that game, 14-0, in five innings.
Thompson was in charge on the mound and at the plate, ripping her three doubles to tie a program single-game mark that had been accomplished five times previously. The last time was by Samantha Sandridge on April 11, 2015, in the second game of a doubleheader against Montclair State University.
Two of Thompson’s doubles came in the big second inning, including a two-run shot her second time at bat. The Scarlet Raptors saw the first 12 batters of the inning reach safely, on six hits, five walks and a hit batsman. Sophomore rightfielder/centerfielder Allie Jenkins (Delanco, NJ/Riverside) had a two-run single in the inning, in addition to Thompson’s two-run double. Thompson had two doubles in the frame, including a two-bagger to start the inning, while freshman designated player Valorie Velasco (Cherry Hill, NJ/Cherry Hill East) added one double.
Junior third baseman Gabby Pfeiffer (Mount Holly, NJ/Rancocas Valley) reached on a HBP and a single and scored a pair of runs in the frame. A pair of juniors, catcher Mackenzie Mason (Penns Grove, NJ/Penns Grove) and second baseman Mariah Hans (Barrington, NJ/Haddon Heights) both walked twice and scored two runs in the inning. Thompson also scored twice.
On the mound, Thompson raised her record to 2-1, allowing only an unearned run in the third inning. She surrendered five hits and two walks, while striking out eight.
Overall, Thompson went 3-for-4 with her three doubles, two runs, two RBIs and a walk, while Pfeiffer was 2-for-2, scored three times and was hit by a pitch. She added one RBI. Mason went 1-for-2 with a double, two walks and three runs scored and Hans went 2-for-3 with two walks, three runs and one RBI.
Pfister, who entered the game as a pinch-hitter in the third inning and went on to play first base, went 1-for-1 with an RBI single, a walk and two runs scored.
Rutgers-Camden 15, Johnson State 0
In the nightcap, Pfister faced the minimum and allowed only a first-inning single by senior shortstop Anna Bingham (Island Pond, VT/North Country Union). Bingham was thrown out stealing to end the inning and Pfister retired the last 12 batters. She finished with no walks and seven strikeouts.
Rutgers-Camden scored all the runs Pfister needed with a three-run first inning, which included a two-run single by senior catcher Jalene Garcia (Vineland, NJ/Vineland). Garcia, playing in her 99th career game (three years at Rutgers-Camden after her freshman year at Albright College), went 3-for-4 with two runs and two RBIs in the game, raising her combined career hit total to 97.
The Scarlet Raptors’ nine-run second inning featured five hits, four walks and an error. The first five batters reached base, sparked by a leadoff walk to senior centerfielder Megan Goodspeed (Florence, NJ/Florence), who proceeded to steal a pair of bases. She scored the first run of the inning on a bunt single by Pfeiffer. Thompson had a two-run single in the frame and sophomore Allie Jenkins (Delanco, NJ/Riverside) drilled a two-run pinch hit triple and scored on a throwing error. Jenkins finished the day with five RBIs.
The Scarlet Raptors tacked on three more runs in the third inning on a bases-clearing triple by freshman shortstop Rachel Edwards (Washington Township, NJ/Washington Township).
In addition to Garcia’s three hits, Pfeiffer and junior leftfielder Gabrielle Castellini (Millville, NJ/Wildwood Catholic) both went 2-for-4 with one run and one RBI. Hans scored three runs, while Thompson, Garcia and Goodspeed each scored twice.