Saturday, April 21, 2012

Red Foxes Take Share Of First With Sweep Of Niagara

Alyssa Zhaka drove home five runs in sweep

Marist 10
Niagara 2 (6)

Marist 6
Niagara 5

Game One Box
Game Two Box

The Marist Red Foxes took a pair of conference games from Niagara Saturday in Poughkeepsie, NY, and moved into a first place tie with Siena.

Game one of this MAAC doubleheader saw the Red Foxes jump in front 2-0 in the first inning with two out singles off the bats of Alyssa Zhaka and Ally Klemmer. It was the beginning of a productive day for Alyssa. Niagara got back into the game in the top of the third inning with RBI singles by Becky Zill and Jen Hare. Marist then exploded for eight runs on nine hits to end the game early. Megan Lamoureux doubled home a pair of runs in the fourth; Haley Birnbaum singled a run home in the fifth; and a five run sixth inning shut down the party, with Haley Birnabaum's two run blast to left field turning off the lights on the Purple Eagles. Emily Osterhaus earned her second consecutive conference win; Niagara's Julie DiMatteo suffered the loss.

Game two was very entertaining, won by Marist 6-5 and going down to the wire. The Red Foxes jumped in front 2-0 with RBIs by Taylor Kuzma in the second inning; and Alyssa Zhaka in the third. Jen Hare tied it up for Niagara with a two run blast to center in the top of the fourth inning. The Purple Eagles then jumped in front, 3-2, when Alexis Wayne singled home Becky Zill in the fifth inning. The bottom of the same inning saw another lead change, with Marist scoring a pair of runs on Alyssa Zhaka's bases loaded single. Niagara still had fight left in them, and tied the score right back up in the top of the sixth inning when an error by Marist second baseman Haley Birnbaum allowed Katie Gruarin to score. In the bottom of the sixth, Marist took a 5-4 lead when Christina Lausch scored on Ashley Corriss' sacrifice fly, although the play at the plate was very close. Marist scored the eventual winner with a squeeze bunt by Megan Lamouruex that scored Taylor Kuzma. Another Marist error helped Niagara score an additional run in the seventh, but the game ended with a double play, Alyssa Zhaka to Nicole DiVirgilio. Marist Coach Ausanio used three pitchers in this game, with Emily Osterhaus earning her second win of the day with late inning relief work.

Marist improved to 6-2; Niagara fell to 2-6.

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