Quinnipiac sweeps double-header against Holy Cross in home opener


Peyton McKenzie

Quinnipiac softball is 11-8 on the season thus far.

Zack Hochberg, Staff Writer

HAMDEN, Conn – After playing 17-straight away games to start the season, the Quinnipiac softball team opened its home schedule with a sweep of Holy Cross Tuesday afternoon. 

“They came out today and we just wanted to make a statement,” Quinnipiac head coach Hillary Smith said. “No one has really been able to watch us play, we’ve been away, so it’s nice to be home and show everybody what we’ve been working on.”

In game one, Crusaders freshman outfielder Ali Sniegocki opened up the scoring in the first inning, singling to bring in a runner from third. 

However, Quinnipiac came right back in the latter half of the inning. Junior pitcher Megan Yurchick walked the first two Bobcats batters, then freshman infielder Natalia Apatiga drove in Quinnipiac’s first run of the game to tie it up.

The Bobcats weren’t finished yet. Sophomore infielder Brooke Hilliard’s sacrifice bunt brought in another run, and Apatiga touched home after graduate student utility player Bridget Nasir singled to right, giving the hosts a 3-1 advantage. 

After allowing a run in the first, sophomore pitcher Sydney Horan settled, never allowing another run in seven innings of work. 

The three Quinnipiac runs scored in the first inning were enough to power the Bobcats to the opening game win, but senior infielder Lala Pascual drove in runs in both the fourth and sixth innings to cap off the 5-1 victory. 

Riding the momentum from the first game, the Bobcats got the job done in game two, as the mercy rule came into effect after Quinnipiac jumped out to a 8-0 lead after five innings.

Unlike the first game, both offenses were quiet through the first couple of innings. That was until freshman outfielder Mary Fogg finally got the scoring going in the bottom of third, driving in a runner from third after slapping a single to left field. 

Mary’s sister, senior outfielder Serena Fogg, made her impact known in the fourth inning. Firstly by making a phenomenal diving catch to shut down the Crusaders offense, before then pushing another run across the plate to make it 2-0 Bobcats. 

Serena Fogg wasn’t the only one shutting down the visitors offense, as sophomore pitcher Jaclyn Gonzalez threw five scoreless innings, allowing just three hits while striking out two batters. 

“It’s not a surprise,” Smith said. “Our pitchers have been lights out for us, so has our defense so we just have to keep that rolling and keep playing our game.”

Pascual continued her solid day in the fourth inning, finding some grass in the outfield gap to bring home graduate student catcher Hannah Davis to push the hosts lead to three. 

Holy Cross tried to battle back in the fifth, getting runners on the corners. The Crusaders tried a double-steal, but the Bobcats were prepared, turning the double-steal into a double-play, stopping the Holy Cross offense in its tracks. 

Quinnipiac’s offense really pushed itself into a different gear in the bottom of the fifth. After scoring again on a wild pitch, the Bobcats continued to put runners on the bases. Battling the sun, Holy Cross senior infielder Kari Jacobson dropped a fly ball in shallow right field that allowed two more runs to score. Serena Fogg’s double off the wall brought in another run, before Pascual’s single to drive in freshman outfielder Ally Hochstade finished the game. 

Following the sweep of Holy Cross, the Bobcats will return to action on March 30, when they face Central Connecticut on the road.