Nashua, N.H. – The Albertus Magnus College softball team split a Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) doubleheader with Rivier on Sunday afternoon at Raider Field. The Falcons took the opener, 8-6, and the Raiders scored a 5-4 walk-off win in the finale.
With the split, Albertus Magnus moves to 14-4 overall and 5-1 in conference play, while the Raiders now sit at 5-11 on the spring and 2-6 in league action.
The Falcons held off a late Raider rally to escape with their fifth conference win in a row. With the tying run at the plate, freshman pitcher Kristen Cunning (Hoboken, N.J.) got out of the jam to earn her first collegiate save. AMC sophomore Megan Ferraro (Branford, Conn.) worked the first six innings for the guests to earn her team-leading eighth win of the year.
Four different Falcons recorded multi-hit games, highlighted by sophomore Gillian Fortier (Naugatuck, Conn.) with two RBIs and two runs scored. Classmate Melissa Castillo (Taftville, Conn.) chipped in an RBI and two runs scored. Both senior Alyssa Puccili (Milford, Conn.) and junior Megan Kelly (Bronx, N.Y.) added two runs scored for AMC.
The Falcons got off to a quick start, plating a run in the top of the first. In the ensuing half inning, Rivier scored three runs to take the lead. Albertus Magnus chip away at the deficit with a run in the third and took the lead back for good with four runs in the fourth. The visitors added insurance runs in both the sixth and seventh frames before the Raiders pulled within two with three runs in the bottom of the seventh.
In the finale, with the score tied at two after 6 innings, Albertus Magnus plated two in the top of the 7th to take a 4-2 advantage. Junior infielder Amanda Jessey (East Haven, Conn.) started the rally by reaching on an error. Fortier knocked her in with her third hit of the contest to push the Falcons ahead, 3-2. Castillo added another RBI on the day and drove in Fortier to give AMC a two-run lead. Rivier responded by putting together a thrilling comeback in the bottom of the 7th.
Rivier senior captain Kathryn Mostone (Pelham, NH) hit a walk-off, two-run single to right center field to win the game, 5-4, and cap the three run frame.
In her second outing of the spring, Albertus Magnus junior reliever Shyleen Ortiz (New Britain, Conn.) was saddled with the loss. In one plus innings of work, she allowed three runs and fanned one hitter. Cunning got the start for the Falcons and tossed the first three innings. Junior Samantha Maselli (Rockville Centre, N.Y.) pitched two innings in relief and allowed one unearned run.
Albertus Magnus returns to action on Wednesday, April 13, with a home conference doubleheader against Johnson & Wales that gets underway at 3:00 pm. Last spring, the two squads squared off in the GNAC Championship. JWU won three of the five meetings between the teams last season.