West Hartford, Conn. -- Freshman Courtney Coppersmith (York, Pa.) picked up her third win in as many days and drove in two runs at the plate as the fourth-seeded UMBC Softball team upset third-seed Stony Brook, 5-2, on Friday morning to advance to the America East Championship for the first time since 2007.
UMBC (29-22, 7-11 AE) got on the board in the first inning when Maddie Daigneau (New River, Ariz.) tripled to left and then scored on a Coppersmith single. Stony Brook (31-18, 11-7) responded with a solo homer in the bottom of the second to tie the game.
The score remained tied until the top of the fourth, when the Retrievers broke it open. Coppersmith reached via error to leadoff the inning, and that was followed by a Sierra Pierce (Youngstown, Ohio) single to put two on with none out.
Valerie Hammett (Mechanicsville, Md.) then laid down a gorgeous sacrifice bunt to move both runners into scoring position. Anna Lonchar (Bristow, Va.) then singled up the middle to score Coppersmith and give UMBC a 2-1 lead. Kaly Winslow (Leesburg, Va.) followed with a single of her own to make it 3-1, and then moved into scoring position along with Lonchar on an error. Logan Hawker (Mechanicsville, Va.) then drove in Lonchar with an RBI groundout to make it 4-1.
Julia Keffler (Huntingtown, Md.) hit a leadoff infield single in the fifth and then stole second. Daigneau then reached on an infield single to put runners at the corners, and Coppersmith gave herself some insurance with an RBI groundout to push the lead to 5-1. The Seawolves got a leadoff walk in the bottom of the sixth, but after a pop-up, Daigneau and Winslow turned a nifty double play to end the inning.
Stony Brook started the bottom of the seventh with a solo homer to cut the Retriever lead to 5-2, but Coppersmith then struck out three straight to secure the victory.
Coppersmith improved to 20-12, becoming only the second pitcher in program history to reach 20 wins in a single season. She struck out six, walked two and allowed five hits. Keffler, Daigneau, Winslow and Coppersmith all picked up two hits in the game.
UMBC will face the winners of the losers bracket at 12 p.m. tomorrow. The opponent will have to win twice to eliminate the Retrievers.