May. 1, 2005
VILLANOVA, Pa. - Seniors Sarah Wall (Hollywood, Fla.) and Krissy Yauch (Tucson, Ariz.) each went 4-for-7 from the plate with two runs and two RBI to help Villanova (36-23, 8-8) sweep Rutgers (5-41, 1-13) by scores of 7-2 and 8-3 on Sunday afternoon at the Villanova Softball Field. The Wildcats' postseason hopes now depend on their final conference doubleheader versus Pittsburgh.
In game one, Wall went 2-for-4 while Yauch went 3-for-4 in Villanova's 10-hit, six-RBI effort. The Wildcats struck first in the bottom of the first inning when sophomore Sheri Donley (Orange, Calif.) led off with a single. Senior Lisa Krueger (Mission Viejo, Calif.) followed with another base hit, which advanced Donley to second. Sophomore Cassie Koenig (Las Vegas, Nev.) was next hit by a pitch, which loaded the bases.
Senior Kari Koller (Rocklin, Calif.) then reached on a fielders' choice as Donley was thrown out at home. But with Koller on, the bases remained loaded. Junior Tessa Paolini (Lancaster, N.Y.) came in to pinch run for Koenig before senior Allie Wisniewski (Smithtown, N.Y.) drew a bases loaded walk to force in Krueger and put Villanova up 1-0.
Yauch reached on another fielders' choice as Paolini was also thrown out at home and the Scarlet Knights managed to keep Villanova from scoring additional runs in the frame.
Rutgers answered back in the second when Helen Smith led off with a solo home run to tie the game at one run apiece.
The Wildcats broke the tie in the third inning when they scored three runs. Koller reached on an error from second baseman Hilary King and was given second base due to King's bad throw. Yauch singled to advance Koller to third, and Wall immediately followed with another single, which scored Koller. Freshman Jackie Dempsey (Lexington, Mass.) then hit the third consecutive single to load the bases. Freshman Lisa Curran (Las Vegas, Nev.) then came up with the fourth single, a two-run shot that scored Yauch and Wall.
Villanova struck again in the fourth. Yauch came up with an RBI-single when her shot scored Koller, who had doubled earlier. As with the previous inning, Wall followed Yauch's single with one of her own, a shot that scored Wisniewski, who had reached on an error from Maggie Geraldi, the shortstop.
In the top of the sixth, Stephanie Johannsen launched a solo shot over center field that would give Rutgers its second run of the afternoon.
The Wildcats scored their final run in the bottom of the sixth. Koenig reached on an error and stole second. Yauch then advanced her to third off a single, and when Yauch stole second, Koenig beat out the defense and was safe at home for the final 7-2 tally.
Senior Shannon Williams (Macungie, Pa.) pitched five innings, striking out 10 and only walking one, while giving up just one run and two hits. Senior Kristen Haynes (Fairfax, Calif.) pitched two innings and struck out three while only allowing one hit.
In the second game, the Scarlet Knights were the ones to strike first. Williams came back as the starting pitcher for the second game and had a shaky first inning before finding her usual firing power. Jenny Card hit a three-run home run to score Kristin Madoch, who led off with a walk, and Smith, who doubled. After Card's home run, Williams struck out the next two batters to end the inning, which would also end Rutgers' scoring for the afternoon.
Villanova then used a seven-hit, six-run inning to erase the three-run deficit and turn it into a 6-3, three-run advantage. Donley, who extended her hitting streak to 10 games, had the first of six consecutive hits, a lead off double. Krueger then singled. Koenig doubled to score Donley and then Koller immediately followed with another double, which scored Krueger and Koenig. Wisniewski followed with yet another double, scored Koller, and advanced to third on the throw home. Yauch followed with a single, scored Wisniewski, then stole second and advanced to third on a ground out from Wall. Dempsey then hit a sacrifice fly to score Yauch and Donley, the top of the order, found herself with a second at-bat in the first inning, which included nine batters and 10 at-bats.
In the third inning, Wall and Paolini hit back-to-back doubles, which would add another run for Villanova, as Wall scored off Paolini's shot to left center.
The `Cats scored their final run in the sixth. Donley led off with a single before freshman Carolyn Brown (Oklahoma City, Okla.) came in to pinch run for her. Krueger's single would advance Brown to third and Koenig's sacrifice fly to right field would add the final run as it pushed Brown home for the eighth run of the game.
Williams picked up the second win as well, bringing her season record to 21-12. In four innings, she allowed just two hits while striking out eight. Haynes pitched the remaining three innings allowing one hit and striking out four.
Villanova's hopes for a sixth consecutive Big East Championship appearance now depend on a sweep of Pittsburgh. The Panthers and Wildcats will likely battle for the fourth seed in the tournament as they both have eight conference wins. The doubleheader will take place on Friday, May 6, at 12 p.m.