LAWRENCEVILLE, NJ – Ellie Oruska (Chadds Ford, PA/Garnet Valley) led the Rider University softball team with three hits, including a home run in Game 2, but the Broncs dropped a pair of one-run decisions to Lafayette, 2-1 and 4-3, Sunday afternoon at Herb & Joan Young Field. With the losses, the Broncs slip to 6-39, while the Leopards are now 11-25.
Samantha Sweigart doubled and scored on a Maddie Wensel single to give the Leopards a 1-0 lead in the top of the first of Game 1. A wild play in the bottom of the first evened the score as the Broncs appeared to have two runners caught at third base, but the Leopards opted to throw to second, where Sabrina Torres (Clifton, NJ/Paramus Catholic) had reached safely, allowing Elyse Cuttic (Easton, PA/Bethlehem Catholic) to scamper home. But Kristyn Marinelli's RBI single in the third proved to be the difference in Game 1.
In the top of the first of Game 2, Sweigart singled and stole second. She took third on Mallory Kane's single and, and after stopping there following a strong throw from the outfield, she'd score when a second throw from the catcher trying to cut down Kane's attempt to advance to second sailed into the outfield. Josettee Spencer's (Hillsborough, NJ/Hillsborough) two-out RBI single in the bottom of the second tied it at 1-1, before the Leopards scored twice on four hits in the third. Oruska's opposite-field homer in the bottom of the third cut the deficit in half, before Amanda Jordan (Somerset, NJ/Franklin Township) plated Torres with the tying run on a double in the fifth. But Lafayette answered with the game-winning run in the top of the sixth, when Wensel singled through the left side with runners on the corners and two out.
QUOTES & NOTES
“They were both really good games to end out the season on this field. It was a good combination. Our pitchers threw really well. I have to give credit to my assistant, Kate Poppe. She's done a tremendous job with this pitching staff. Our defense was solid. A couple of mental mistakes, but nothing that really took us out of it. We were able to bounce back and finally our bats were woken up. We had 10 hits out of the infield in the second game. So that was great to put it all together.” – Rider Head Coach Jaclyn Timko
• Emily Oltman (Collegeville, PA/Perkiomen Valley) went the full 7.0 innings in Game 1, allowing two earned runs on eight hits and three walks, while striking out one.
• Cuttic pitched 5.2 innings of relief in Game 2, allowing three earned runs on eight hits and a walk, while striking out one.
• The game was the Broncs' final home contest of the year. A single game against La Salle Wednesday and doubleheaders next weekend against Marist and Saint Peter's will all be played on the road.
BRONCS BY THE NUMBERS
• Oruska went 2-for-3 in Game 1, before launching a solo home run, her team-leading fourth of the year, in Game 2.
• Torres scored two of the Broncs' four runs on the day, while Oruska and Cuttic also crossed the plate.
The Broncs return to action Wednesday, when they travel to La Salle for a single game at 3 p.m.