THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. – The Brandeis softball team dropped its first game of the season against a Division 3 opponent, falling to Cal Lutheran University, 4-1, in a game shortened to six innings because of the rain. The Judges are now 1-2 overall, while the Regals improve to 5-4.
Brandeis was victimized by CLU centerfielder Hannah Brown, who doubled in all three of her plate appearances and scored each time. In the second and fourth innings, she was brought home by 2B Mikaela Mayhew. In the fifth, the Regals added two more runs on a Blake Lewis home runs and an RBI single by shortstop Antonia Rapisardi that plated Brown for the third time.
The Judges got their only run in the top of the sixth inning. With one out, senior 3B Madison Sullivan (Dover, N.H./Dover) walked and classmate Danielle Novotny (Milford, N.J./Delaware Valley) singled. Rookie CF Marissa DeLaurentis (Centereach, N.Y. / St.John the Baptist Diocesesan) singled home Sullivan for her team-leading third RBI of the season, but the Judges were unable to keep the pressure on as CLU threw out Novotny trying to go from first to third.
Brandeis had one multiple hitter, Novotny, while rookie SS Keri Lehtonen (Oneco, Conn./Plainfield) had the squad's lone extra-base hit, a third-inning double.
Junior Melissa Soleimani (Somerset, Mass. / Somerset Berkley Regional) suffered the loss in the circle, giving up four earned runs on 10 hits in five innings of work. She struck out four and walked two to fall to 1-1 on the season. Cal Lutheran's Courtney Sooy improved to 5-4 on the season with six innings of five-hit pitching, with four Ks and two walks.
Brandeis is off until March 5 when the Judges take on Penn State-Brandywine and Austin College before taking part in the University Athletic Association (UAA) tournament from March 8 through 13 in Altamonte Springs, Florida.