Georgetown softball’s consolation victory March 26 in the third game of its series against the University of Connecticut Huskies was overshadowed by two tough losses March 24. The Hoyas have yet to win a best-of-three series against a Big East opponent this season.
During their Friday doubleheader against UConn (17-9, 6-3 Big East), the Hoyas (8-20, 3-6 Big East) fell short of expectations. The Hoyas lost their first game 5-3 and fought hard in game two, but UConn ultimately narrowly defeated them 7-6.
The Hoyas came out of the dugout strong for game one and were the first to get runs on the board. Graduate shortstop and second baseman Morgan Zamora struck a remarkable inside-the-park homer, launching herself and graduate outfielder Cameron Kondo across the plate to get Georgetown on the scoreboard.
Yet, the Hoyas were unable to capitalize on their early lead, allowing UConn to score 5 total runs in the first and second innings. The Huskies maintained their 5-3 lead to secure the victory — though they remained scoreless in the final five innings — and Georgetown only managed to claw back by 1 run.
Georgetown also fell short during its second game Friday evening despite a similarly solid fight. The Huskies put up 1 in the bottom of the first, but the second inning belonged to the Hoyas. A hit by pitch, double and error set the stage for a bases-loaded jam, and a single by first-year outfielder Claire Turner quickly tied the game at 1-1.
The bases remained loaded during the next at-bat, and Kondo delivered a timely grand slam to give Georgetown a 5-1 lead. Unfortunately, the Hoyas’ offensive outburst in the second inning stopped there, and they would stay scoreless for the next four innings. This loss of energy allowed the Huskies to put up 4 runs across the third and fourth innings to level the score at 5-5.
Game two came down to the seventh inning and proved to be a nail-biter for the Hoyas.
Graduate infielder and catcher Mae Forshey cranked a double down the left field at the top of the seventh inning, sending Turner home for her second run of the game. This run put Georgetown on top 6-5.
Yet, Georgetown lost its defensive discipline in the seventh and allowed UConn to notch its second victory of the series on a walk-off double.
The Hoyas were raring to go in game three with a day of rest after tantalizing losses.
Following a leadoff home run by Kondo to start the game, senior infielder Lorena Vasquez-Inzunza added to the Hoyas’ lead with her first home run of the season.
Georgetown capitalized on UConn’s wildness in the top of the third, as Turner was quick to round the bases on a steal and 2 wild pitches. Kondo advanced to scoring position on a wild pitch later that same inning before being doubled in by Zamora, who also scored herself on yet another errant pitch.
Kondo said the team’s loss on Friday solidified the Hoyas’ mindset going into Sunday’s game, as everyone was craving a win and worked together to make it happen.
“I think we have been knocking on the door all season, and it was nice to have it pay off on Sunday,” Kondo told The Hoya. “My goal in the leadoff spot is to be a table-setter, and I wanted to put a good swing and good pitch, and I am happy it worked out.”
While UConn scored 2 runs in the bottom of the third, the Hoya defense bounced back behind strong pitching until the final whistle, winning 5-2.
Head Coach Pat Conlan said she was thrilled to see her team respond with a win after two tough losses.
“When all parts of our game come together — pitching, defense and offense — we are a tough team,” Conlan told The Hoya.
Junior outfielder Gabby Nemarich said the Hoyas have proved their resolve to win with the series.
“We have been working hard to elevate our game, and we saw some real strides against a conference rival,” Nemarich told The Hoya. “I think we showed them what we’re made of, that Georgetown softball is working towards winning a championship.”
The Hoyas went on to defeat District rival, George Washington University (11-13, 2-4 Atlantic 10), 1-0 in a single match March 29. Georgetown will next travel across the country to Tucson, Ariz., for a three-game tournament against the University of Arizona (20-12, 3-6 Pac-12) and the University of San Diego (13-19-1) on March 31 and April 1.
“The stadium and atmosphere will be electric and a great opportunity for our team to compete at the highest level before returning to play Providence,” Conlan said.
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