Ramapo’s women’s softball team fell short of victory against Kean University 4-0 at the 2019 NJAC Tournament opening game at Kean’s Cougar Field on Tuesday afternoon. This drops Ramapo’s overall record to 22-13, with Kean’s record improving to 35-5.
The Roadrunners appeared to be flat on their technique during this game since there was no action pursued in the first two innings. With two outs at the bottom of the third inning, Kean Cougar Julie Raba walked. Due to a throwing error, Jacqueline Raba moved to third and later scored on another walk with bases loaded, resulting in a 1-0 lead.
It was at the bottom of the fourth when Cougar Katie Debbie hit a strong single to right field, moving to second due to a pass ball, before being lifted for pinch runner Grace Cofino. Soon after, Caroline Ratti was hit by a pitch which put runners on first and second with one out. A single from Olivia Zengel loaded the bases for Kean, and a walk worked by Raba pushed the score another run in Kean’s favor, 2-0. Ramapo starting pitcher Erin Fitzsimmons also managed two strikeouts over the first four innings.
In the bottom the fifth inning, Kean batter Cayleen Rizzo extended the Cougars lead to 3-0 with a powerful home run hit over the left field wall. This inning also featured Kean’s final score when Ratti hit a single, which allowed Samantha Krakower to score, bringing the score to 4-0.
To secure their win, Kean starting pitcher Taryn DiGiacomo dealt a few crucial outs to the Roadrunners’ final two at-bats. DiGiacomo struck out five Ramapo batters, walked one and scattered three Ramapo hits which ultimately lead to the Cougars’ victory.
Fitzsimmons’ 13-9 record received elevation and downfall due to this game. She managed to strike out four batters throughout her time in the game, while also walking four and permitting six hits. Fitzsimmons surrendered four runs during her time on the mound, with three of them being earned.
Sophomore pitcher Jessica Becchetti was on the mound for the seventh time as a Roadrunner during the fifth inning as she pitched the final two innings of the game. She yielded just one hit and walked one.
The winner of the NJAC Conference tournament earns an automatic bid to the 2019 NCAA Tournament. Kean will advance as the No. 3 seed to the sixth game of the NJAC Tournament against No. 2 ranked Rowan University (29-10). As the No. 4 seed, Ramapo will move on to Game 5 of the NJAC Tournament against the No. 1 seed The College of New Jersey (31-6) this Friday, May 3, at 1:00 p.m.