LANCASTER, Pa. – The Franklin & Marshall softball team swept its first two Centennial Conference (CC) games of the season on Sunday afternoon. The Diplomats downed Ursinus 6-5 in an extra-inning game one victory before taking game two by a score of 7-3 to complete the sweep. F&M moved to 10-2, 2-0 CC while the Bears fell to 6-9, 0-2 CC.
In game one, Ursinus scored first, as Ellen Goldstein reached on an error to plate Carly Gartenberg and make it 1-0 in the top of the third. Zoe Heinke came up next and hit an RBI-double to make it 2-0, and Delia Mercurio singled down the left field line to score Goldstein and extend the Bears' lead to 3-0. Rachel Hyman followed with a single through the right side off F&M starter Isabel Schaefer to give Ursinus a 5-0 advantage.
In the bottom of the frame, the Diplomats got a run back with one swing of the bat when Samantha Burns crushed a homerun over the left field fence to put a dent in the Bears' lead at 5-1. Later in the inning, Crystal Good reached on an infield single that scored Kathleen Zogorski, making the score 5-2.
Down by the same score heading into the bottom of the seventh, F&M's Erin Russell scored on a past ball to bring the Diplomats to within two runs at 5-3 and Megan Ryan followed with a single to center to plate Patricia Crigler and make the score 5-4. Next up was Katie Wenger, and the freshman hit an infield single, and Ryan was caught in between second and third in a rundown, however Ursinus' second basewomen overthrew the third basewomen as Ryan was heading for third, allowing the sophomore to score and tie the game at 5-5. F&M scored three runs in the seventh, all with two outs, to send the game into extra innings in thrilling fashion.
In the eighth, Schaefer, allowed a lead-off double down the left field line by Hyman, followed by a sacrifice bunt to advance Hyman to third. With the go-ahead run at the third, Schaefer got Bridget Winay to pop out and struck Meredith Watters out to not let a run cross the board.
In the bottom of the frame with the bases loaded, Amanda Savino led off the inning as a pinch hitter and singled to left field for the first hit of the collegiate career. After Melissa Bollmeyer walked and Russell was hit by a pitch, Good came up to bat and was also hit by a pitch, giving the Diplomats the 6-5 dramatic come-from-behind victory.
Good, Burns, and Zogorski each notched two hits for F&M, while Good recorded two RBI. Casey Derella led Ursinus with three hits, while Hyman recorded two.
Schaefer (4-0) threw all eight innings and earned the win, allowing three earned runs while striking out eight batters. For the Bears, Heinke (3-4) went 7.1 innings and allowed 12 hits.
In the nightcap, the Diplomats wasted no time, as Bollmeyer scored off an error to give F&M an early 1-0 lead. After Burns walked to plate another run, Zogorski singled through the left side to make it 4-0 Diplomats.
The Bears did not go quietly, as Justine Lohrey held them in check until the fifth inning when Watters doubled to score Hyman and make it 4-1. In the top of the sixth, Ursinus scored two more off a wild pitch and RBI-single from Mercurio.
However, the Diplomats put the game out of reach in the bottom of the sixth, thanks to a sac fly from Good and an two-RBI double by Ryan, as F&M went on to win 7-3.
Russell and Good each had two hits, while the Diplomats showed plate discipline by drawing six walks in the game.
Lohrey (2-1) earned the win, throwing 5.1 innings and giving up three earned runs for the 26th win of her career, putting the senior one away from third on F&M's all-time wins list. Schaefer threw the final 1.2 innings to earn her first collegiate save.
The Diplomats are back in action on Tuesday when F&M travels to Alvernia with game one starting at 3:30 p.m.