WILMINGTON, N.C. – UMBC softball's freshman Toni Santonastasso (Galena, Ohio/Pope John XXIII Regional) drilled her first collegiate home run and finished the day 2-for-3 at the plate, but the Retrievers dropped both of their games on the opening day of the UNC Wilmington Landfall Park Hampton Inn & Suites Invitational. UMBC was edged out in a 3-0 loss to Georgetown in its opener and followed with a 13-2 loss in six innings versus Saint Joseph's in the second game at Boseman Field.
Senior second baseman Katlin Olesky (Irvine, Calif./Saddleback College) was one of three Retrievers to finish the day with two hits, along with Santonastasso and junior Bridget O'Malley (Baltimore, Md./Seton Keough), but UMBC combined to leave 15 runners on base in the two games.
GAME 1: UMBC sophomore pitcher Jessica Holte (Ashland, Va./Atlee) struck out eight batters and tossed six scoreless innings of work, but Georgetown registered four of its seven hits during the fourth inning to help account for all three of the Hoyas' runs.
Georgetown junior Grace Appelbe recorded an RBI-single, the third hit of the fourth inning, with one out to account for the first run of the frame. A one-out triple from senior Sophia Gargicevich-Almeida down the right field line drove in two more runs before Holte (0-3) was able to escape the inning.
The Retrievers registered five hits in the game, all coming from different players, and stranded eight runners on base. GU senior Megan Hyson (1-0) tossed the complete game shutout, tallying seven strike outs on the morning.
GAME 2: The Retrievers jumped out in front, 1-0, on a single down the right field line from O'Malley that drove in freshman Emily Neal (Bear, Del./ Caravel Academy) in the bottom of the first inning.
Saint Joseph's knotted up the contest at one apiece in their next at bats, stringing together three straight singles, including a RBI shot into left field from sophomore Stephanie Chaiser.
The Hawks were able to take advantage of a pair of errors by the Retrievers in the top of the third inning. A grand slam to left field from junior Brandi Harkness put Saint Joseph's out in front, 5-1, with all four runs from the blast being unearned.
Satonastasso's round tripper in the bottom of the fourth inning brought the Retrievers back within three, 5-2, but the Hawks were able to add insurance in the top of the sixth. Freshman Nikki Alden drilled the team's second grand slam of the afternoon in part of a six-hit, eight-run frame for Saint Joseph's.
Freshman Kim Puccio (Sparta, N.J./Sparta) received the start in the circle for the Retrievers and went three innings, surrendering five runs, one of which was earned for her first loss of the season. Sophomore Kelly Lane (Albany, N.Y./Colonie Central) threw two innings and allowed eight runs and senior Miranda Clark (Tampa, Fla./H.B. Plant) threw one scoreless frame. Freshman Madison Clarke earned the victory (1-0) for the Hawks after allowing two runs in five innings of work.
RETRIEVERS' WEEKEND SCHEDULE:
Friday, Feb. 13
UMBC vs. Georgetown: L, 0-3
UMBC vs. Saint Joseph's: L, 2-13 (6)
Saturday, Feb. 14
UMBC vs. Saint Joseph's @ 10 a.m.
UMBC at UNC Wilmington @ 3 p.m.