(April 22, 2016)Union, N.J. … The College of New Jersey softball team improved to 22-13 overall and 9-5 in NJAC play this afternoon with two wins over Kean University. In the first game, the Lions took the lead early and never gave it up, going on to get a 3-2 victory. In the second game, the TCNJ defense was strong and didn’t allow any runs. The team went on to claim a 2-0 shutout to complete the sweep of Kean.
Game 1: TCNJ 3, Kean 2
TCNJ got on the board first in the second inning. Gaby Bennett (Hamilton, NJ/Steinert) started things off with a single to shortstop. Jess Santelli (Hillsborough, NJ/Hillsborough) walked to get on base and Daniella Marino (Hazlet, NJ/Raritan) singled to load the bases. Steph Vuono (Voorhees, NJ/Eastern) singled to right field to drive in two runs.
The Lions added one more run in the fourth inning to take a 3-0 lead. Madison Levine (Oakland, NJ/Indian Hills) got on base due to an error and then Marino got another single to reach first. Vuono added a double to drive Levine home and earn her third RBI of the game.
Kean tallied two runs in the bottom of the fourth but that was as close as they would get. TCNJ held off their advances to earn the 3-2 victory.
Sam Platt (Cedar Grove, NJ/Mount Saint Dominic Academy) pitched the entire game and earned her 13th win of the season. She allowed just four hits and struck out four batters.
Offensively, Marino went a perfect 3-for-3 and Vuono went 3-for-4 with three RBI.
Game 2: TCNJ 2, Kean 0
TCNJ started the second game off by taking an early 1-0 lead in the second inning.
Deanna Utter (Byram, NJ/Lenape Valley Regional) made it to first when she was hit by a pitch and then advanced to second when Santelli hit a single. Marino had a double to send Utter home for the first run of the game.
In the top of the sixth inning, Jess McGuire (Stockton, NJ/Hunterdon Central Regional) got a double to left field and then Santelli also doubled to left field to drive in the second TCNJ run.
Stellar pitching and defense kept Kean from getting on the board and handed the Lions their second win of the afternoon.
Katie Hourihan (Neptune, NJ/Neptune) improved to 5-5 on the season as she pitched the whole game. She struck out three while allowing only two hits.
Santelli and Marino each had an RBI, going 2-for-3 and 1-for-3 respectively.
The Lions are back in action on April 26 when they host Montclair State University for a conference doubleheader. The first game is set for a 3 p.m. start with the second to follow at 5 p.m.