PURCHASE, N.Y. – The Western Connecticut State University softball team dropped a doubleheader at 16th-ranked Manhattanville College on Sunday, 7-2 and 6-5.
The Valiants improve to 27-2 on the season while the Colonials drop to 14-10.
The Colonials scattered six hits with freshman Jordan Fitzsimons (Bristol, CT) went 1-for-2 with an RBI single to lead the visitor's offense.
Senior righty Jaclyn Smith (Sandwich, MA) was chased after two inning and is now 3-4 on the season. She allowed six runs, five of them earned, on eight hits. Sara Tenke (Glen Cove, NY) slammed the door over the final four innings, allowing just one unearned run and two hits.
WestConn scored first on a one-out single from Fitzsimons up the middle with the bases loaded, but the bleeding was stopped the following at-bat thanks to a stellar play by Valiants' senior shortstop Sophia Chapleone to start a 6-3-5 double play to allow just one more run to score and end the half inning at 2-0 in favor of the Colonials.
In the bottom of the second, the Valiants jumped all over WestConn to take a lead it would not relinquish. With one out and runners on the corners, Ventarola hit a sacrifice fly to right to plate Hartenstein. Sophomore Isela Casillas was next to contribute, notching an RBI single to left to place classmate Jordy Boyd from third and tie it at 2-2. Rookie Giovanna Liggett immediately followed with a two-run single to center and make it 4-2.
Manhattanville score two more in the bottom of the third. Hartenstein began with a single up the middle to plate senior Evonne Torres from second after the catcher reached on a single through the left side and advanced to second on a wild pitch. After a Colonial pitching change, Chapelone collected an RBI with a groundout to second to plate Hartenstein. For good measure, the Valiants tacked one more run on in the bottom of the fifth as Chapelone notched another RBI with a single to left to plate junior Steph Muller from third.
For the first inning and a half, the game remained scoreless before the bottom of the second. With two outs and runners on first and second, Ventarola blasted a long ball of the centerfield fence to make it 3-0. Sophomore Brooke Fanson doubled the next at-bat and was brought home by Cassilas' RBI single. The Valiants took a 5-0 lead in the bottom of the third after Boyd sent a single to right to plate Hartenstein.
WestConn came back in the next half inning with four runs of its own to make it 5-4 and the score remained that way until the top of the sixth inning. Erica Bower (Hillsborough, NJ) delivered a two-RBI double and Alyssa Lionetti (Brookfield, CT) drove in a pair of runs with a single to left field.
The Colonials scored another run then following a steal from Annie Rosa (Washington, CT) and an errant pick-off attempt that allowed Tenke to score from third base and make it 5-5.
Rosa went 3-for-4 while Charline Plasczynski (Brostol, CT) Fitzsimons and Tenke each had two hits in four trips to the plate.
The game remained tied until the home half of the seventh when Ventarola stepped up to bat with two outs and runners on first and second. She took the first pitch of the at-bat and sent it up the middle for the walk-off double and victory.
Tenke suffered the loss after coming on in relief of Lionetti. Over the final three and two third innings, Tenke allowed one run on four hits, struck out one and walked two. She is now 4-3 on the season.
Lionetti did not get much defensive help over her three innings. She allowed five runs, only one of them earned, on seven hits while striking out one and walking another.
The Colonials committed seven errors during the twinbill.
WestConn plays host to Rhode Island College on Tuesday, April 16. First pitch against the Anchorwomen is set for 5 pm. Manhattanville returns to action this Tuesday afternoon, April 16, for another non-conference doubleheader at home versus future Skyline Conference opponent Mount Saint March College. First pitch of game one is scheduled for 3 pm.