April 2, 2008

Softball sweeps WPI, 9-1 & 5-4, as Streilein wins both

WALTHAM, Mass. – Brandeis University senior pitcher Kaitlin Streilein pitched 6.2 innings of stellar ball over the course of two games to earn a pair of wins as the Judges swept a doubleheader from WPI, 9-1 and 5-4, on Marcus Field today.

In game one, the Engineers (7-8) opened the scoring with two out when senior Nicole DeCampo connected for her first home run of the season. Streilein would hold the visitors to just one more hit over the next four innings, as she struck out nine of the 14 batters she faced.

Brandeis (8-7-1) answered with three runs in the bottom of the inning, With one away, sophomore catcher Erin Ross doubled and scored two batters later on a Streilein single. The Judges took the lead for good when sophomore SS Chelsea Korp scored from third on a wild pick-off attempt as Streilein stole second. Senior Natalie Volpe singled up the middle to give the hosts a 3-1 lead. Two more runs came home in the second on WPI wild pitches.

In the bottom of the fourth, Ross scored without a hit. She walked, moved to second on balk and scored after two wild pitches. The Judges' final three runs came on Streilein's fourth home run of the season and the second of the campaign for rookie 1B Courtney Kelley to put Brandeis ahead, 9-1. Sophomore Allie Mussen retired the side in order in the fifth.

In addition to her pitching prowess (4 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 9 K), Streilein was also the game's only multiple hitter, going 2-2 with two RBI and two runs scored with a home run. Ross was 1-2 with 3 runs scored, while Kelley had the only other multi-RBI performance with 2.

Junior catcher Jen Richards had the only other hit for the Engineers. Senior Heather Hassett suffered the loss in the circle, allowing 9 runs (7 earned) on 9 hits and 4 walks. She struck out 5 and fell to 3-4 on the season.

WPI junior CF Nicole Maglione led off game two with a home run against Volpe, her second of the season. The Engineers were able to keep the offense going, as Maglione singled with one out in the third and scored on a single by DeCampo for a 2-0 lead.

The Engineers doubled the lead in the top of the fifth, as senior SS Briana Dougherty doubled and came home on DeCampo's second hit of the game. After DeCampo moved to second on a passed ball and stole third, she came home on a one-out single by sophomore 2B Meg Foley that drove Volpe from the game. Streilein came on and stranded two runners.

In the bottom of the fifth, Brandeis got to WPI rookie lefty Lindsay Brown, who had been stellar through the first four innings, retiring the first 11 hitters she faced and striking out 7. Volpe kicked off the rally with a double to center field, and pinch-runner Lauren Rashford scored on a Kelley two-bagger. An infield single by junior RF Vicki Roomet and a walk by rookie CF Carly Schmand loaded the bases. The Judges got their second run on a wild pitch, while a Ross suicide squeeze cut the margin to 4-3. Brown's second wild pitch tied the game.

Brandeis loaded the bases in the bottom of the sixth, but Brown escaped the jam. She was not as lucky in the seventh. With one out, Ross doubled, followed by a single to shortstop by Korp, who moved to second as all eyes were on the runner on third. A four-pitch walk to Streilein loaded the bases, but Brown was unable to relocate the plate, as she threw four more balls to rookie 3B Danielle Lavallee to end the game.