Softball sweeps Siena

Chris Leary

The Quinnipiac softball team swept Saturday’s doubleheader against Siena in dramatic fashion, winning the first game on a walk-off home run and tossing a shutout in the second.

Emily Bellush’s walk-off home run in Game 1 earned the Bobcats their first lead of the game, and more importantly an 8-7 victory.

“As a player you live for those opportunities and I got the chance to do it,“ Bellush said.

Bellush finished the day going 2-for-5 with three runs batted in. The home run also gave Bellush her third victory from the circle this season.

The Bobcats fell into a 3-0 hole in the first, but responded with a rally of their own. Alex Murray and Jess Amenda led off the first inning by reaching base to set up a game-tying home run from senior Katie Allendorfer.

“That really set a tone for the game,” Quinnipiac head coach Germaine Fairchild said. “I think if that doesn’t happen the confidence doesn’t trickle down the lineup, which I saw it did. From there on out it didn’t matter when they scored more runs because our offense knew they could score too.”

Two unearned runs in the third inning gave Siena a 5-3 lead, which was extended to 6-3 on an RBI double from Shannon Jones. Senior Heather Maffeo and Murray led the fifth off with singles and were bunted over by Amenda. Alendorfer followed with a two-run single to right field to pull the Bobcats within one run.

Another run in the top half of the seventh gave Sienna a 7-5 lead. The Bobcats answered one final time starting with an RBI triple from freshman Alex Alba cutting the lead to 7-6. Bellush then stepped to the plate and hit the first pitch out for the game-winning home run, her second walk off home run of the season.

“I was in the same situation against Yale a few weeks ago, I just tried to take that same mentality into the at bat,” Bellush said.

Sophomore Heather Schwartzburg shut out Siena in the second game, striking out seven and only surrendering four hits over seven innings in the 3-0 victory.

“She gives our team an opportunity to win every time she pitches,” Bellush said. “I’ve never played with someone who can come out and do that day in and day out against any team.”

With the win, Schwartzburg improved her record to 8-5 on the season.

Kelly Wall singled with one out in the second inning, later advancing on a wild pitch. Kim Le Bel followed with a hit of her own and advanced to second on a heads up base running play. Both runners scored on an error and fielder’s choice to give the Bobcats a 2-0 lead.

The Bobcats scored their final run when Bellush singled in the fifth to plate Maffeo.

“We really focused on taking our swings and hitting the ball hard to give our pitchers more support,” Bellush said. Offensive patience had been something Fairchild stressed throughout the week to her team.