Posted by Katie Peverada
In the first home series of a weather-mired season, the Skidmore College softball team split two exciting games with the Castleton State Spartans, dropping the first game 3-2 but winning the second 2-1.
In the first game, Castleton was able to get runners on base in the first two innings but pitcher Lauren Fortunato '17 and the Skidmore defense were able to shut out the Spartans with key plays to keep the game tied. With a runner on third with one out, Lila Rosenfeld '16 started a 6-2-3 double play to end the inning. Fortunato took care of the outs in the second inning, as she calmly fielded two ground balls to the mound.
Castleton was finally able to break the tie in the third inning when Jessica Babcock tripled home Kayla Daigle to make it 1-0. The Thoroughbreds responded in their next at bat, tying the score at 1-1. Abby Shea '15 reached second on an error and then scored when Fortunato stroked the ball to centerfield. Despite having runners in scoring position, though, the Thoroughbreds were unable to capitalize further.
Castleton's Veronica Arnone gave the Spartans the lead for good in the sixth inning when she sent a two-run homerun deep over the left-centerfield fence.
But Cassie Fishkin '16 started the Thoroughbred rally in the seventh inning when she sent a ball to left field that one-hopped the fence for a standing double. Pinch runner Billie Kanfer '16 smartly advanced to third on a wild pitch and then scored on a Mackenzie Whiting '16 sacrifice fly to centerfield.
Despite a solid outing, Fortunato took the loss for the Thoroughbreds, allowing three runs on three hits. Arnone, who allowed one run on one hit in three innings, got the win in relief for the Spartans. Fortunato was 1-3 with one RBI at the plate while Fishkin was 1-3 with a double.
In the second game of the doubleheader, Skidmore took an early 1-0 lead and then added one more in the fourth and held on for the 2-1 victory. Fishkin had a strong outing on the mound, as she threw all seven innings and only allowed an unearned one on four hits with six strikeouts and four walks.
Fortunato led off the first inning with a triple to right field and then scored when Castleton had a throwing error on the relay.
"I just wanted to use our momentum from the first game. We tend to keep up the energy as a team when we are winning and it was a team goal to score first," Fortunato said.
Skidmore's second run came in the fourth when Brittany Osborn '17 scored on a throwing error from left field. Osborn finished 1-3 with one run scored while Rosenfeld and Shea both finished with one hit apiece.
Castleton's only run of the game came in the fourth when Jessica Babc moved to third on a passed ball and then scored on Chelsea Grad's single to left field. Fishkin shook it off, settled in, and shut out the Spartans in the final three innings.
"I felt good out there today. The defense was strong and backed me up when I needed it" Fishkin said.
Skidmore's defense again stood tall, registering consecutive 1-2-3 innings in the second and third and then again in the sixth. The fifth inning ended with a stellar throw from Sam Skott '15 in left field to Whiting behind the plate, preventing the tying run from scoring. In the seventh inning, Shea and Emily Mangan '16 combined in another double play to end the game.
The Thoroughbreds, who now sit at 3-9, are back in action Saturday when they face RPI in a Liberty League doubleheader at 1 and 3 p.m.