Vermont claws back vs. Hartford

If you get knocked down, dust yourself off and try again. This may be the UVM softball team’s motto, as it was knocked down with a 7-3 loss in the first game of a double header with the Hartford Hawks, and then came roaring back in game two, winning by way of the slaughter rule. The Catamounts (14-24, 5-12) took an early 1-0 lead in game one, scoring in the first inning. The run came from a single by junior Kate Haber, who then stole second base. Two batters later, junior Kate Ramsey singled and an error by the Hartford centerfielder gave Haber the go-ahead run. The lead would be short-lived however, as Hartford would post three runs in the top of the second against Vermont starter, sophomore Aimee Kern (11-12) and two more in the third. Kern got tagged with six earned runs on fourteen hits, while walking two and striking out eight over seven innings. Although she took the loss, Kern’s eight strikeouts gave her 155 on the season, breaking the single-season school record previously set by Katie Quinn in 1990. Vermont would score again in the fifth off of RBI singles from freshmen Jeanine Connolly and Hayley Crosby, but it would not be enough to salvage the first game. The change from the first game to the second was staggering. Whereas the Cats had problems clicking in the first game, in the second they preformed like a finely tuned Swiss watch. Vermont sent freshman Allison Dagget (3-9) to pitch the second game, a choice that would turn out to be deadly for the Hawks. Dagget was untouchable throughout the game, allowing only two hits over five shutout innings, also ringing up six strikeouts. With Dagget pitching so well, it was time for the offense to find itself. Ramsey did just that, blasting a homerun down the third base line in the third inning, scoring herself and Kern for a 2-0 lead. This was Ramsey’s ninth career homerun, setting a school record. Dagget lead the fourth off with a homerun of her own, followed by the consecutive singles from junior Annie O’Brien, Crosby, and sophomore Rachelle Eloschuk, which scored two runs, extending the lead to 5-0. In the fifth inning the floodgates remained opened and the Catamounts kept pounding the Hawks starting pitcher. With one out Ramsey and sophomore Whitney Borisenok had back-to-back doubles off the wall to add another run, and Borisenok would then score on an error. The fatal blow came from Eloschuk, who hit a bases-loaded infield single to score junior pinch runner Emily Miles to make the score a slaughter rule-worthy 8-0. This was surely a vindicating victory after losing the first game.”We came out really flat in the first game,” head coach Pam Childs explained. “But we really turned it on in the second with the bats, some good defense, and a great pitching performance by Ali.”The Cats’ wrap up the regular season this week with games at Dartmouth on Tuesday and a three-game series at Binghamton over the weekend.