Van Kirk wins 100th as Saints softball sweeps Skidmore
Sunday, April 22, 2018 - 5:46 am

Allie Courtwright allowed just one run in 8.1 innings of work to earn a win and a save and also went 2-for-4 at the plate to lead the St. Lawrence University softball team to a pair of wins over Skidmore, 10-8 and 3-1, in a Liberty League doubleheader in Saratoga on Saturday afternoon.

With the victories, Saints' head coach Elisa Van Kirk notched her 100th career victory in her sixth season at St. Lawrence.

Deanna Sullivan led the Saints' offense, going 3-for-6 with a double and three RBI on the day.

"I am super proud of the whole team," said Van Kirk. "We focused on every pitch and on every play and competed for two games. It was a great team effort."

While the games were played at Skidmore, the Saints were the home team in both games, as the doubleheader was originally scheduled to be played in Canton but was moved as the field was not ready after the North Country received a dose of winter weather earlier this week.

Game 1: St. Lawrence 10, Skidmore 8

St. Lawrence scored seven runs in the second inning and held off a late Skidmore rally to win the first game. Taylor Armijo's second triple of the season plated two runs in the inning. Sullivan added an RBI double, and Caitlin Syphurs, Skylar Hein, Mylea Mann and Courtwright all had RBI singles in the second, as the Saints pounded out nine hits and sent 13 batters to the plate.

The Thoroughbreds cut the lead to four with three runs in the top of the third, as Lizette Roman-Johnston drove in a run with an RBI triple, then scored on an RBI double by Hannah Paolucci, who in turn later scored on an error.

St. Lawrence restored the seven-run margin in the bottom half of the frame with a two-run double by Hein and an RBI single by Angelina Carney.

Roman-Johnston started a rally attempt for the Thoroughbreds with a grand slam in the sixth, and Kristina Foley added an RBI double to cut the lead to two, but Courtwright shut the door in relief, getting the final four outs while allowing just two walks with two strikeouts for her first save of the season.

Sullivan, Hein, Carney, Mann, Courtwright and Alexandra Barter were all 2-for-4 at the plate for the Saints, who outhit the Thoroughbreds 15-7 in the opener.

Roman-Johnston went 2-for-5 with five RBI from the leadoff spot for Skidmore, while Paolucci was 2-for-4.

Madison Mitchell went 3.2 innings for the Saints, allowing three runs (two earned) on three hits with five walks and four strikeouts. Caroline Young earned the win, allowing five runs (three earned) on four hits and one walk and one strikeout in two innings of work.

Amanda Carilli took the loss for Skidmore, allowing seven runs on 11 hits in the first two innings. Emily Popp came on in relief to start the third inning and allowed three runs on four hits in four innings.

Game 2: St. Lawrence 3, Skidmore 1

Syphurs hit an RBI double, and Sullivan followed with a two-run single in the second inning of second game, and that was all the offense the Saints would need as Courtwright allowed just one run in a complete-game victory.

Skidmore cut the lead to two on an RBI double by Popp in the third.

The Thoroughbreds threatened in the sixth, getting two runners on base with one out on a hit and an error, but Courtwright struck out the next two hitters to retire the side and preserve the lead.

The Saints retired the first two batter in the seventh, as Courtwright struck out the leadoff batter and Syphurs made a sliding catch in left field for the second out. Heather Mak slapped a two-out single to center, but short stop Deanna Sullivan caught a line drive in the next at bat to end the game.

Courtwright struck out six and allowed five hits and one walk to improve to 2-2 on the season.

Carilli allowed three runs on five hits with two strikeouts and a walk in the loss for the Thoroughbreds.

Records: St. Lawrence (10-10 overall, 2-2 Liberty League); Skidmore (15-15, 2-6).

Up Next: At the University of Rochester, Sunday, April 22, 1 p.m.