From University of Rochester Athletics
Pinch-hitters Gabi Alatorre and Mackenzie Cronin came through with clutch hits in the bottom of the sixth inning as Rochester pulled out a 4-3 victory over Case Western Reserve University on Saturday afternoon.
The win over Case gives Rochester a 6-3 record at the University Athletic Association softball championships. The Yellowjackets are 8-4 overall. Rochester wraps up its time in Florida on Sunday when the Yellowjackets play Emory University. Case Western Reserve is 4-5 in the UAA, 9-5 overall.
With the score tied 2-2 in the bottom of the sixth, Julia Liberto singled with one out. Alatorre pinch-hit and singled up the middle, moving Liberto to second. Jocelyn Blackshear pinch-hit for Alyssa Murillo. She grounded to short and Liberto was thrown out at third. Steph Brunet, for whom Alatorre pinch-hit, was running for Alatorre. She moved to second. Cronin pinch-hit for Shelby Corning and singled through the left side. That scored Brunet and moved Blackshear to third. Kayla Kibling singled to second base, scoring Blackshear with the second run.
That Kibling hit proved vital in the top of the seventh. With one down, Case's Annie Wennerberg homered, bringing the Spartans within 4-3. Eleni Wechsler retired the next two hitters to nail down the victory.
Wechsler picked up the win in relief of Brittany Grage. In 1.2 inings, Wechsler allowed two hits, one earned run, walked one and struck out one. Grage went the first 5.1 innings. She scattered six hits, allowed two earned runs, walked one, and struck out seven.
The loss was taken by Katie Dzierwa. She relieved starter Rebecca Taylor in the fifth inning with one out. Over the first 4.1 innings, Taylor gave up eight hits without a walk. She struck out five.
Rochester scored in the bottom of the first on back to back doubles by Sarah Wayson and Grage. Case tied it with an unearned run in the second. Molly O'Brien doubled with one down, moved to third on a groundout, and scored when the next ground ball was booted.
The Yellowjackets edged ahead with one in the third. Corning singled and two batters later, Wayson singled to left center, setting up first and second. Grage singled down the left field line, scoring Corning. Wechsler singled to load the bases. Lauren Muni flied to right and Wayson was thrown out at the plate trying to tag and score.
Grage worked out of a two-on, no-out jam in the third with a foulout, a strikeout, and after a single that loaded the bases, an infield force play. The Spartans left two on in the fifth and finally got the tying run in the sixth. O'Brien doubled and moved to third on a bounceout. Wechsler relieved and was greeted by an RBI single from Abi Groseclose. She allowed only one hit after that among the next five hitters – the Wennerberg home run that made it a one-run game.