April 10, 2009

Pioneers Soar in Back to Back Shutouts Over Seahawks

April 10, 2009

Game 1 Boxscore
Game 2 Boxscore

Fairfield, CT- Jen Russell (Seymour, CT) held Wagner to three hits and struck out 10 as the Pioneers won game one of Friday's double header 1-0. Liz Tsipouras (Simi Valley, CA) started game two and tossed seven shutout innings of her own allowing just six hits and fanning five Seahawks. Leadoff hitter Taylor Froelich (Garden Grove, CA) took the first pitch she saw in game two and deposited it over the left field fence for her sixth homer of the season.

Sacred Heart (11-20, 7-3 NEC) had the first opportunity to score in game one after an Adrian Fitzsimon (Sacramento, CA) double. Jessica Perez (Santa Maria, CA) hit the ball hard, but right at the Wagner third baseman and the pitching duel would remain intact. Russell was absolutely lights out in game one as she earned her 14th complete game of the year and third individual shutout. She did not allow a hit until the fourth inning and responded by immediately striking out the side.

Wagner (12-22, 1-7 NEC) got a lead off double in the fifth inning from Jackie Vanore to give the Seahawks their best scoring chance of the game. Russell bounced a pitch to the next batter and Vanore tried to take third but catcher Shannon McCoy (Yorba Linda, CA) corralled the ball and came up firing to cut down Vanore at third and end effectively end the Seahawks rally.

The Pioneers would get on the board in the bottom of the sixth as Froelich provided the spark with a leadoff single. A Courtney Lee (Camarillo, CA) double would advance Froelich to third as she had to hold up to ensure the ball was not caught. Amanda Bradley (Langley, BC) would finish the job and gave Russell and the Pioneers the only run they would need with a sacrifice fly to center field. Wagner would strand a runner at first in the seventh as the Pioneers went on to take game one 1-0.

After Tsipouras pitched a scoreless first frame Froelich drove the first pitch she saw and kept it just inside the pole in left to provide the Pioneers with an early 1-0 edge. The Pioneers did not stop there in the first inning as they loaded the bases and McCoy's RBI single put SHU on top 2-0. Sacred Heart would extend its lead in the third inning with a two out rally.

The trouble started for Wagner after Tsipouras reached on a two out error and Alyssa Garza (Valencia, CA) singled to left field. Fitzsimon singled to center to bring in Tsipouras, giving the Pioneers a 3-0 lead and putting runners on second and third. Garza would score on a heads up play as a wild pitch got away from catcher Jamie El-Aazami. Another Wagner error would further extend the inning and allow Fitzsimon to trot home and put the score at 5-0.

Garza would provide more Pioneer offense in the fifth with an RBI single. Garza had been struggling but had a breakout game in the second half of the double header, finishing with two hits, two runs, one RBI, and one stolen base. Froelich would also finish up her day in the fifth with an RBI single of her own making the final score 7-0.

Tsipouras never allowed a Wagner runner to reach third base as she earned her first career complete game shutout in her fourth win of the season. First baseman Lee also pounded the ball in game two going 4-4 at the dish. The Pioneers, in second place in the NEC, will take on defending NEC champions Long Island tomorrow at Pioneer Park. First pitch is scheduled for 1:00 pm.