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Sunday, April 28, 2013

Beth Kann Hits Shot Heard Round The MAAC; Iona And Niagara Split

Beth Kann's dramatic homer put Iona in the driver's seat
Niagara 2
Iona 0

Iona 4
Niagara 3 (8)

The Iona Gaels and Niagara Purple Eagles split a crucial MAAC doubleheader Sunday in New Rochelle, NY.

Game one saw the continuance of the dominant pitching of Niagara's Jen Sansano. The junior transfer was once again brilliant, shutting out the Gaels while striking out 11; she walked only one batter and scattered three hits. The Purple Eagles went in front in the top of the first inning thanks to Alexis Wayne's RBI single; it would be all they'd need. But they did add another run in the top of the fourth inning with an Ambur Farmer RBI single, and went on to win 2-0. Carly Argyle herself pitched very well in taking the loss, striking out eight. Alexis Wayne was 2 for 3 for Niagara; Sarah Schutz had two of Iona's three hits.

Niagara, needing a win to clinch a tournament berth, jumped to a 2-0 first inning lead in game two when Becky Zill launched a bomb over the fence. They increased their lead to 3-0 in the next inning when Aileen Hinton doubled home a run. Iona began to rally in the bottom of the third inning when Bri Schauer's RBI single cut the Niagara lead to 3-1. The bottom of the fourth inning saw Iona hit back-to-back home runs to tie the game, solo shots by Katie Jansson and Carly Argyle. In the fifth inning, Jen Sansano entered the game in relief of Niagara starter Kim Bryson, and shut down Iona for another three innings. The game went to extras, and in the bottom of the eighth inning, senior Beth Kann launched a pitch over the center field fence, sending the defending champions into a frenzy of celebration. It was one of the biggest hits in Iona history; a loss would have made Iona's chances at the tournament very slender. As it turned out, that is now Niagara's chances, after their fabulous streak. Jen Sansano took the loss, but you can hardly blame her for anything; she was the main reason the Purple Eagles climbed back into contention. Carly Argyle got the win, pitching 15 innings on the day, and getting three crucial MAAC wins over the weekend. Katie Jansson was 3 for 3 in the game for Iona. Becky Zill and Ambur Farmer had two hits each for Niagara.

Iona is 8-6. They must sweep St. Peter's next weekend to get in, because Manhattan at 9-7 owns the tiebreaker between the two teams. Niagara finished MAAC play at 9-7; they must hope that Siena loses all four of their remaining games.


8 comments:

Anonymous said...

what happens if 4 teams go 9-7?

Anonymous said...

Great games, but you have to wonder about the NU coaching staff decision not to start Sansano in both games of this crucial doubleheader. Even high school pitchers routinely pitch both ends of a doubleheader, and to make the decision to not start the hottest pitcher in the MAAC for the two most important games of the season is mind boggling. Iona did. Its almost as if the NU coach doesnt get the concept, as Sansano did not start both ends of a doubleheader in any game this season. Its hard to believe, given 3 runs, that Sansano would not have won that game had she started.

WNY Softball said...

If 4 teams finish 9-7, the tiebreaker is this: The 4 teams are grouped in a "mini-conference", and their records against one another are calculated. In that case, 2 of the 4 teams would qualify for the MAAC tournament. So once the top team of the 4 is determined, then the remaining three would again form a "mini conference", and their records against one another would be determined. If there are still ties, then it would go to who had the better record against the top team in the MAAC. Still tied, vs. the 2nd best team and so on. If after all that it's still tied, they flip a coin!

WNY Softball said...

Sorry I missed your comment yesterday.
I agree, and Jen did come in later, so she wasn't tired. It was a blunder that probably cost them a spot in the tournament. Iona used the same pitcher in both games, 15 innings. It's too bad...with the way Jen has been pitching, Niagara had a realistic chance at winning a title.

Anonymous said...

What if three teams tie? Is the process the same?

WNY Softball said...

Yes, it's the same tiebreaker for 3 or more teams. If Siena, Niagara and Manhattan are tied for 4th place, Siena wins.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for the answer and for all the hard work you put into this site. It is a great resource for those of us fortunate enough to have a player in the Maac and I have enjoyed reading your stories the last four years.

WNY Softball said...

Thanks :)