The second ranked Bombers softball team eliminated two teams from the NCAA Division III regional tournament this afternoon by shutting out fourth ranked Western Connecticut College 9–0 in an abridged game, and squeaking out a 2–1 win over Empire 8 conference foe St. John Fisher College, who was ranked fifth overall entering the tournament after winning the Empire 8 conference crown.
Senior Allison Greaney was a force for the Bombers in the first game, in which Ithaca was the visiting team. Greaney pitching all five innings and allowed just two hits from the Western Connecticut Colonials only a day after they had exploded for 20 runs. At the plate she had RBI hits in all three of her appearances, and was responsible for almost half of the game’s runs. Sophomore outfielder Jen Biondi and classmate Molly O’Donnell had multi hit games, while freshman designated player Jackie Branco scored two runs. The Bombers’ offense got the necessary insurance runs in a four run fourth inning, capitalizing off two errors from Colonials senior third baseman Amy Hartman.
The Blue and Gold found themselves down a run to the Empire 8 conference champion St. John Fisher Cardinals entering the fourth inning, but were able to score a run in each of the next two innings to put them away.
Senior pitcher and outfielder Britt Lillie tied the score at one with a solo home run in the fourth, while Biondi had what would be the game winning RBI single in the fifth that scored sophomore outfielder Adrienne Walters.
Greaney threw another complete game, allowing four hits and striking out three. 58 of her 80 pitches were thrown for strikes. She let up back to back two-out singles in the seventh inning but ended the Cardinals’ scoring threat by getting freshman outfielder Jennifer Martin to ground out.
The South Hill squad will face Keuka College, who they lost to yesterday, at 10 a.m. tomorrow at Kostrinsky Field with elimination on the line once again. The winner of the matchup will have to beat the top seed Messiah College Falcons twice in a row to capture the regional title and earn a spot in the College World Series. The first opportunity to defeat Messiah will come immediately after Ithaca’s game, while the second game will take place at 10 a.m. Monday if necessary.