After sweeping Quinnipiac University last week, Fairfield was determined to continue their winning streak following a difficult start to the season. Taking on Stony Brook University on April 3, the Stags were able to defeat the Seawolves 2-0, getting their third straight win of the season.
Going into the game, the Fairfield softball team had posted five wins and 14 losses, while Stony Brook went into the game with a 12-13 record. The Stags knew that they were going to have to change up the game in order to continue their winning streak.
“We knew we were going to throw off four different pitchers today and that usually keeps some offense off balance,” said Head Coach Julie Brzezinski.
Starting off on the mound for Fairfield was Lauren Falkanger ‘16. She struggled to start off the game strong when Stony Brook’s first two batters were hit by wild pitches and forced to take their bases. At this point, Stony Brook had the opportunity to send some runners home, but Fairfield was able to get the next three outs and retire the inning.
After two innings, the game remained scoreless. Stony Brook led Fairfield with two hits, but the Seawolves were not able to execute plays and send any runners home. Fairfield was able to find their offense early and in the third inning, the Stags posted two runs on the board.
After Stony Brook made an error from the left side of the diamond, Nicole Capra ‘16 of Fairfield was able to advance to second base after her single. Continuing this streak, Gianna Kinhofer ‘17 hit another to the mound. On this play, Stony Brook attempted to stop Capra from advancing to third base on the hit, giving Fairfield the opportunity to score. However, she was able to make it to third base and would not be called out by the time the ball got there.
With a runner in scoring position now, Kristen Filicia ‘14 hit a single to left field that allowed Capra to go home and put the first run on the board for the Stags. Next, Sammy Ruffolo ‘15 prepared to sacrifice bunt to advance the runners further into scoring position. She connected on a successful bunt that advanced Filicia and Kinhofer to second and third base, respectively.
Senior Lauren Liseth then hit a single to send Kinhofer home after another error from Stony Brook. At the end of the inning, Fairfield led Stony Brook 2-0.
“Kristen Filicia and Lauren Liseth did a great job offensively,” said Brzezinski about what generated the offense in the third inning.
For the remaining innings, Fairfield’s defense was able to keep them ahead. Because Fairfield was switching their pitcher often, Stony Brook failed to score any runs for their team.
“I thought our pitchers did an excellent job. They threw a shutout,” said Brzezinski. “Stony Brook is a very good offensive team and any time you can keep a good offensive team down, it’s key.”
Falkanger pitched three innings for the Stags, striking out one and allowing Stony Brook two hits. Senior Rae Ball spent the third and fourth innings for the Stags on the mound and gave up one hit, while Nicole Gardon ‘17 struck out one and allowed one hit in the fifth inning. Senior Rebecca Trott closed out the game, walking two and striking out one.
Failing to score any runs by the sixth inning, the mercy rule came into effect for Stony Brook. After six innings, Fairfield was able to get their third straight win, putting them at 3-1 in conference play. The Stags play again Thursday, April 10 at the University of Connecticut.