EASTON, Pa.—The Rider University softball team was swept in a non-conference doubleheader on Sunday after at Metzgar Fields in Easton.
The Leopards came from behind to win 10-5 in the opener and held on to win the nightcap 8-7.
“We had a lot of opportunities but could not finish,” said head coach Jaci Timko. “A couple of small things could have gotten us a win and maybe two wins. Overall, we just need to battle from the opening pitch.”
In game one, sophomore Toni Nino (Adelanto, Calif./Silverado) singled to shortstop with one out in the first inning and after a single by senior Dana Sensi(Allentown), Nino and Sensi executed a double steal to give the Broncs an early 1-0 lead.
Nino stole three bases in the doubleheader to go along with her three hits on the day.
Lafayette hit a two-run double with one out in the fourth inning as the Leopards went ahead 2-1.
Junior Josettee Spencer (Hillsborough) reached on a one out error in the top of the fifth inning and with two outs, Sensi doubled to tie the score 2-2. Senior Kim Valdes (Jupiter, Fla./King's Academy) followed with an RBI double to score Sensi and give the Broncs a one-run lead. Senior Emily Cottrell (Beachwood/Toms River HS South) then hit her fifth home run of the season, a two-run shot over the left field fence, making the score 5-2 Rider.
Sensi had three hits for Rider on Sunday.
Lafayette put together three hits and took advantage of a Rider error to score four times as the Leopards retook the lead 6-5.
Five more hits, including two run scoring doubles and an RBI single allowed the Leopards to add four runs in the bottom of the sixth inning for the final score.
Junior Megan Ailand (Burlingame, Calif./Burlingame) scattered 13 hits in six innings while recording one strikeout.
Trailing 1-0 in the top of the second inning of game two, senior Montana Berg(Danville, Calif./Monte Vista) hit her first home run of the season, clearing the center field fence to tie the game 1-1.
Five Lafayette hits and two Bronc errors led to a five-run inning for the Leopards in the bottom of the fourth inning, making the score 6-1 Lafayette.
Rider (5-28) opened the top of the fifth inning with five straight hits, including a three-run double to left center field by Spencer and Sensi followed with a two-run home run to center field, tying the game 6-6.
Sensi now has 176 hits in her career, tied for 11th all-time at Rider.
Lafayette took a 7-6 lead in the bottom of the sixth inning on an RBI single and the Leopards added the eventual winning run on a bases loaded wild pitch.
Rider used a sacrifice fly by freshman Kiera Swank (Bear, Del./Caravel Academy), scoring senior pinch runner Samantha Judd (Thousand Oaks, Calif./Westlake), who ran for Cottrell after she doubled as Rider got to within 8-7 but the tying run was stranded at third base.
Cottrell, who became the 50th Rider softball player with 100 career hits on Saturday, added three more hits in today’s doubleheader.
The Broncs had 11 hits in the second game, one off a season-high.
Ailand took the loss in game two, throwing three innings of relief, allowing four earned runs, while recording two strikeouts.
Rider and Lafayette have met 65 times with the Broncs winning 44 of the contests.
The Broncs host Villanova University on Wednesday for a non-conference doubleheader at Herb and Joan Young Field, the first contests of a season-high eight-game home stand.