Despite temperatures in the 30s, the softball team had no problems keeping its bats hot against Buffalo State College today, picking up victories of 11-2 and 11-6.
The Bombers returned home to Kostrinsky Field after winning nine of their last 10 games on the road. Sophomore pitcher Jillian Olmstead, who picked up her 11th win of the year, said the team was able to feed off the energy of playing on its own field.
“It’s always wonderful to play at home, and being in our own atmosphere should be good for us as we close out the season,” Olmstead said.
The Bombers loaded the bases to start off Game 1, and sophomore first baseman Sydney Folk hit a two-run single into right field. The Bombers scored an additional run on a Bengals throwing area to take a 3-0 lead.
Folk, who leads the Blue and Gold in batting average, home runs, and RBI, finished the game hitting 3-for-4 with four RBI.
Freshman outfielder Maggie Maurice also added a solo home run in the fourth inning, and the Bombers put up six runs in the fifth inning to put the game well out of reach for the Bengals.
Sophomore Sam Bender pitched only five innings in Game 1 because of the eight-run mercy rule. She collected her ninth win of the season, giving up just three hits and striking out three batters. Her only blemish of the outing was allowing two-run home run in the fifth inning to Bengals designated player Aleesha Williams.
Buffalo State Head Coach Pam Amabile said her team was not consistent offensively, as the Bengals were only able to score in three of the 12 innings played.
“We can’t live on just the long ball, and we didn’t have enough base hits to match their offensive production,” Amabile said.
Sophomore outfielders Julianne Vincent and Rachel Dell’Orto ignited the Bombers’ offense early in Game 2, helping to build the Blue and Gold’s 7-0 lead after three innings. The duo had two hits each, as Vincent drove in a run in the first inning while Dell’Orto hit a two-run double in the second.
Bender got the start again and pitched three scoreless innings until she allowed an RBI single and a three-run home run. Pallozzi then gave the ball to sophomore Jillian Olmstead, who pitched the final 3 1/3 innings and gave up only two runs in the process.
Head Coach Deb Pallozzi said Olmstead has performed better when coming out of the bullpen rather than pitching from the first inning onward.
“It seems to work for us,” Pallozzi said. “(Olmstead) comes in really well in relief situations, and sometimes she’s more comfortable with that than starting.”
The Bombers were able to tack on insurance runs in the sixth inning on two Buffalo State errors that pushed the Bombers’ lead to 11-4.
The Blue and Gold will put their four-game winning streak to the test against Cornell University in the battle of Ithaca beginning at 3:30 p.m. Wednesday on Kostrinsky Field.