Quinnipiac softball team snaps a five game skid with a 4-0 win over Sacred Heart


Chris Dacey

By: Mike Dalton

The Quinnipiac softball team hosted its last non-conference opponent, the Sacred Heart University Pioneers on Tuesday.

Coming into the game, the Bobcats hadn’t won a game since they defeated Siena in game one of a doubleheader on April 21.

That changed quickly, as the Bobcats blanked the Pioneers in a 4-0 win in Hamden.

Quinnipiac set the tone in the bottom half of the first inning, when it stepped up to the plate for the first time after a one-two-three top half of the inning by senior pitcher Casey Herzog.

“What mattered the most is that we came out early in that first inning and put up a couple of runs,” Quinnipiac softball head coach Jill Karwoski said. “Anytime we do that, it gives our pitchers confidence.”

Colleen Walsh, the Pioneers starting pitcher, struggled right off the bat. Quinnipiac’s Erin Larsen led off the bottom of the first with a walk, then Lexi Courtney singled up the middle. Walsh then walked the next three hitters and gave up two runs. After Walsh’s third consecutive walk, co-head coaches Elizabeth Luckie and Pam London took out Walsh and put in Shyanne Fennell.

The Bobcats scored a third run on a fielder’s choice, but Fennell wasn’t charged for the run since Walsh was responsible for putting the runner on base.

Heading into the second inning, the Bobcats were already up on the Pioneers 3-0, and they never looked back from there.

Miranda Magana smacked a ball in play over left fielder Stephanie Mangiameli’s head for a two out double in the bottom of the third inning for her 170th career hit. That puts her only four hits away from tying her for eighth all-time on the hits list in Quinnipiac softball school history with former teammate, Jordan Paolucci.

Emily Czaja drove in Magana on a bloop single that landed in left-center field to extend the Bobcats lead 4-0.

Offensively, the Bobcats didn’t need to provide starting pitcher Casey Herzog with much run support.

Herzog pitched her Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC) leading 18th complete game this season, giving up two hits, no runs and no walks while striking out seven batters in the process.

The Bobcats got the job done, shutting out the Pioneers 4-0. Despite this being a non-conference game, it was a crucial win they desperately needed.

“I think we play a little bit better with a sense of urgency,” Karwoski said. “I think the bigger the chip (on our shoulder), the harder we’re going to fight.”

In the MAAC Standings, the Bobcats are on the outside looking in at seventh place in the conference. Only the top six teams make the playoffs, and even though the win against the Pioneers won’t change where they stand in their conference, it puts them in the right direction to get a playoff berth.

The Bobcats have only four regular season games left. Their next two games will be on the road against the Manhattan Jaspers, the second-to-last placed team in the MAAC. Game one starts at 12:00 p.m.