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Fefel Throws Gem as Retrievers Trounce Hartford, 7-1, in America East Softball Opener
Amanda Fefel struck out a career-high 11 batters against Hartford.
The Retrievers got it started in the first, scoring three runs with two outs, as reigning America East Pitcher of the Week Brittany Stratton was uncharacteristically wild, hitting three batters and walking two in the inning. With the bases loaded, right fielder Krista Kearns hit an RBI single, UMBC’s only hit in the inning. First baseman Julia Culotta was then hit by a pitch to drive in another run, and third baseman Emily Thompson plated the third with a walk.
In the top of the second, second baseman Dana Shepherd and Fefel both singled with one out, setting up designated player Ashley Gray, who smashed a three-run homer to give the Retrievers a 6-0 lead. Two of Gray’s three hits this week have been home runs, and she has seven RBI in her last three games.
Stratton settled down after the second inning, allowing just three hits the rest of the way. One, however, was a two-out solo home run by Shepherd in the third. The Retrievers would not score again.
Fefel, meanwhile, cruised through the first six innings, allowing just three base runners on a hit and two walks. But with two outs in the bottom of the seventh, center fielder Kristen Cericola broke up the shutout with a solo homer. The Hawks then put runners on first and second with a walk and a single, but Fefel escaped the jam with her 11th strikeout of the day.
Fefel evened her record at 4-4 with the complete game victory. She allowed just three hits and three walks, and her 11 strikeouts are a career high.
Stratton suffered her first loss of the season, falling to 7-1 on the year, after allowing seven runs on seven hits, five walks and four hit batters.
Shepherd and Fefel each had two hits for the Retrievers, while Shepherd scored three times.