The UMBC Softball Team (18-20, 2-3 America East) travels to Albany this weekend to take on the Great Danes for a three-game set.
The Retrievers will look to build off their double-header sweep of Maryland Eastern Shore in which they had shutouts in each game, thrown by junior Kim Puccio (Sparta, N.J./Sparta) and senior Jessica Holte (Ashland, Va./Atlee). Puccio is the reigning America East Pitcher of the Week and struck out nine batters in her game on Wednesday. The senior did not allow a hit in the first 5.2 innings, and ended up throwing a three-hit shutout with six strikeouts.
The Retrievers received big hits from Albany native Kelly Lane (Albany, N.Y./Colonie Central), classmate Kaelin Jackson (Export, Pa./Franklin Regional) and freshman Maddie Daigneau (New River, Ariz./Boulder Creek) over Wednesday's games. Lane hit her third homerun of the season, while Jackson drove in her team leading 21st RBI. Daigneau drove in the only run of the first game, and drove in a run in the second game as well. The freshman also had a great diving stop to save a run in the first game.
Scouting the Great Danes:
Albany (16-13, 1-5 AE) is coming off a double-header at Binghamton on Wednesday in which they were swept by scores of 6-5 and 4-0. The Great Danes lost game one off a walk-off a two-run double.
Albany is led at the plate by Elizabeth Snow, who leads the team in all major batting categories. She has a sports a team high .407 batting average, 33 hits, nine homeruns, 31 RBI, a .510 on-base percentage, and a .926 slugging percentage.
In the circle, Celeste Verdolivo has a 5-6 record, 4.05 ERA, has struck out a team-high 56 batters and walked a team-low 20 batters. Devin Durando has a team low 3.64 ERA in 40.1 innings pitched, as half her appearances have been in relief.
The Great Danes and Retrievers have multiple common opponents this year, including Howard, Siena, Stony Brook, and Binghamton. The Retrievers won their lone game at Howard 11-3 while Albany won both their games 6-5 and 7-2. Against Siena, UMBC won both their games 4-3 and 6-2, while Albany won both of their games 11-3 and 7-2.
The common conference opponents between the teams are Stony Brook and Binghamton. UMBC won two of their three games, winning 4-0 and 5-3, while dropping one game 3-0. Albany dropped both of their games against the Seawolves by scores of 5-2 and 7-5. Both teams lost their two games against Binghamton.
The Retrievers are 9-35 all-time against Albany, and are 2-15 at Albany.
The two teams will face off for two games on Friday afternoon, starting at 1:00 PM, and the final game on Saturday starting at 12:00 PM.