WASHINGTON – The Gallaudet University softball team was swept Sunday afternoon by North Eastern Athletic Conference (NEAC) rival Penn St.-Berks, 10-4 and 9-0 in five innings.
In the first game, the Nittany Lions (9-9, 8-4 NEAC) had a 6-0 lead with two outs in the bottom of the fourth inning before senior Elena Ciccarelli (Whitesboro, N.Y.) scored the Bison's first run, followed by junior shortstop Chelsea Lee (South Brunswick, N.J.), who scored on a hit to right center field by third baseman Mia Fernandez (Artesia, N.M.). The Nittany Lions ended the inning before any more runs could be scored.
Penn St.-Berks catcher Julia Moscato responded with a solo home run to left field as the Nittany Lions added two more runs and led 9-2. GU (4-21, 1-7 NEAC) pushed two more runs across the plate in the bottom of the fifth but that was as close as the Bison could get.
Senior Montana Murphy (Simi Valley, Calif.) took the loss as Berks scored nine runs (seven earned) off 11 hits and two walks. Freshman Kristi Luna (Austin, Texas) made her pitching debut as she pitched the last two innings of the game and only allowed for one hit, one run, walked two, and struck out one batter.
The second game started strong for the Nittany Lions offense as they scored four runs off three hits and a Bison error in the top of the first inning to knockout Luna, the starting pitcher. Penn St.-Berks, the defending NEAC champions, added two runs in the fourth and three in the fifth. Freshman Alyssa Barlow (Chandler, Ariz.) and sophomore Adele Fass (Brooklyn, N.Y.) had the only hits for the Bison off Nittany Lion starting pitcher Abby Staskiel (1-2).
Berks center fielder Jenna Heffner went 2-for-4 at the plate with a double, three RBI and one run scored to lead the Nittany Lion offense.
The Bison travel to Wilson College on Wednesday for a conference doubleheader starting at 3 p.m. The two teams were supposed to play each other earlier this week but it got postponed due to poor field conditions.