PISCATAWAY, N.J. (April 3, 2013) – The Rutgers softball team split its midweek doubleheader against Hofstra Wednesday evening at the Hofstra Softball Stadium, losing, 6-5, in the second contest but taking a 1-0 victory in eight innings in the opener for its first victory over the Pride in nine years.
Sophomore Alyssa Landrith (Vacaville, Calif.) tossed her best game of the season and one of her best games as a Scarlet Knight in RU’s Game One-victory, going 8.0 innings and allowing just two hits in a shutout win. The Scarlet Knights have now won five of their last seven contests.
RU (19-13, 3-3) took the first game in electrifying fashion, as a solo home run by junior Alexis Durando (Oakland, N.J.) – her fourth of the season – in the top of the eighth inning guided the Scarlet Knights to their first victory over Hofstra in nine years. Landrith followed Durando’s homer up by retiring three straight Pride hitters in the bottom of the eighth, closing one of the most dominant pitching performances of her young career.
Landrith went 8.0 innings – her fourth complete game in as many starts – and allowed just two hits and three walks versus 11 strikeouts. Her innings pitched (eight) and strikeout (11) totals were career highs, while she tied her season-low in hits allowed in starts this season with two.
Coming in, Hofstra (19-10, 4-1) posed Landrith’s biggest challenge of the season as it boasted the 35th-best team batting average in the country (.311), with seven of its nine starters hitting at least .300 this season.
The California native has now won three of her last four starts to improve her record to 11-8 this season. Her most recent scoreless outing drops her ERA to 1.80 – good for 28th-best in the country.
Hofstra jumped on RU early in the second game of the doubleheader, as a three-run home run by Tessa Ziemba after an RBI single by Erin Trippi gave the Pride a 4-0, first inning lead. RU chipped away at the lead throughout the contest, but could not recover from the early hole, taking a 6-5 loss.
Freshman pitcher Dresden Maddox (Kennesaw, Ga.) took her first loss in her last three starts, and drops to 6-2 on the season. She allowed seven hits and five earned runs in 2.1 innings of work, as senior pitcher Abbey Houston (New Egypt, N.J.) threw 3.2 innings of relief ball.
Houston did not allow a run while in the game, surrendering just two hits to the Pride.
An RBI on a fielder’s choice by freshman Melanie Slowinski (Severn, Md.) in the top of the second inning gave RU its first run of the contest, as the Scarlet Knights would slowly begin chipping away at the Hofstra lead.
RU tacked on another run in the third inning before exploding for three runs in the top of the fifth inning, led by a two-run home run by sophomore Jackie Bates (Lincroft, N.J.). The homer, coupled with an RBI double from freshman Jordan Whitley (Clayton, Del), who was 2-4 with a double and an RBI, cut the lead to 6-5 heading into the final two innings of play.
But Hofstra pitcher Olivia Galati, who took the loss in Game One of the doubleheader, entered the game collected the save for the Pride, despite beginning the inning beginning with an RU hit and Hofstra error.
A trio of Scarlet Knights recorded multi-hit performances in the second contests, including Bates, who was 2-4 with two runs and two RBIs, and Durando, who went 2-3 with two runs, two doubles and an RBI.
RU returns to the RU Softball Complex on Saturday, April 6 for its second home BIG EAST series of the season against Georgetown. The Scarlet Knights will duel the Hoyas in a doubleheader on Saturday (noon and 2 p.m.) before returning on Sunday to close out the series with another noon matchup.
Rutgers leads the all-time series, 6-3, and has won its last four contests against the Hoyas.
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