Baltimore, Md.- Sophomore first baseman Carly Lesko (New Milford, N.J./New Milford) blasted her team-best sixth homer of the season, a two-run shot in the fifth inning, to help UMBC pull away from local rival Coppin State in a 6-1 win on Tuesday afternoon at UMBC Softball Stadium.
UMBC (6-11) got on the board in the first inning when junior third baseman Kaelin Jackson (Export, Pa./Franklin Regional) doubled down the left field line to score Tori Alexander (Woodbridge, Va./Woodbridge Senior). The score remained 1-0 until Kelly Lane (Albany, N.Y./Colonie Central) started the bottom of the fourth with her second homer of the season to double the Retriever advantage.
Coppin State (0-5) would cut the lead in half in the top of the fifth, but UMBC would answer back immediately. Jackson would hit an RBI single to left that would drive in Erin Trnka (Goffstown, N.H./Goffstown), Bridget O'Malley (Baltimore, Md/Seton Keough) would score on the play when the left fielder misplayed the bounce. Lesko, the next batter, would then hit her blast to center to make it 6-1 and that's how the score would remain.
Junior Jessica Holte (Ashland, Va./Atlee) pitched all seven innings to improve to 3-4 on the young season. The south paw allowed six hits, an earned run and struck out four while walking none in the complete game effort.
Earlier in the day, the America East Conference announced that Jackson was named conference Player of the Week, while sophomore Kim Puccio (Sparta, N.J./Sparta) was tabbed Pitcher of the Week.
Jackson batted .833 over three games last week, reaching base eight times in nine plate appearances. She had five hits (two home runs) and three walks to go along with a slugging percentage of 2.000 and on-base percentage of .889. Puccio made two appearances, racking up six strikeouts in six innings and pitching to an ERA of 1.24.
The Retrievers return to action tomorrow, Wednesday, March 8, when they host Howard for a double-header beginning at 1 p.m.