PHILADELPHIA – The Philadelphia University softball team extended its winning streak to four with a Senior Day sweep of Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference (CACC) foe Nyack, 5-0 and 11-2 in five innings, on Saturday.
In between games one and two, the Rams honored their four seniors: Gabrielle Brown (Shillington, Pa./Governor Mifflin), Mollie Burrell (Harleysville, Pa./Souderton Area), Renee Kakareka (Schaumburg, Ill./Schaumburg), and Nicole Troisi (Norristown, Pa./Pope John Paul II).
Stephanie Pepper (Toms River, N.J./Central Regional) followed up her 13-strikeout performance on Thursday afternoon by striking out 13 Warriors in Saturday's game one victory while surrendering just three hits. Ten of Nyack's 12 outs in the first four innings came via a Pepper strikeout.
All of the Rams' offense came in the fourth as Philadelphia managed four hits off Kylie Brase—who recorded two strikeouts in the complete-game loss—and was helped out by two Nyack errors.
Pepper started the rally reached base on an error and advanced to third on a Burrell double. Gianna Bliss (Phoenixville, Pa./Phoenixville Area) broke the scoreless tie, hitting a ball back at Brase that she couldn't field cleaning, allowing Pepper to score. After a Courtney Wensel (Bechtelsville, Pa./Berks Catholic) single doubled the lead, Karakera ripped a triple to right-center field to plate Bliss and Wensel to make the score 4-0.
Erica D'Angelo (Broomall, Pa./Archbishop Carroll) capped off the inning with a RBI single for the Rams' fifth run.
Burrell and Wensel led the Philadelphia six-hit attack with two hits apiece.
Alissa Brugnoli, Kim Yano, and Aferdita Sinanaj had one hit each for Nyack.
Philadelphia's patience at the plate was the difference in the nightcap as the Rams drew a season-high nine walks and got hit by three pitches.
The Rams plated three runs in the first inning and one more in the second without the benefit of a hit. With the bases loaded on a hit batter and two walks in the first, Wensel drew the Rams' third straight walk to force home D'Angelo for the first run. Brown knocked in two more runs as a ground ball bounced off of Brugnoli's glove, allowing two more runs to score.
In the second, D'Angelo came around to score on a fielder's choice off the bat of Naomi Stas (Tuckerton, N.J./Pinelands Regional).
The Warriors got two runs back in the top of the third on a one-out single by Brase.
Philadelphia responded with six during its turn in the third to widen the gap to 10-2. Shannon Weaver (Sinking Spring, Pa./Wilson) delivered the Rams' first hit of the game, a single to center, to knock in Wensel, who were hit by a pitch to start the inning. After a D'Angelo sacrifice fly brought in the second run of the inning, Stas helped her own cause with a two-run double to right center, increasing the lead to 8-2. The Rams tacked on two more runs on a Burrell ground out and a wild pitch.
D'Angelo was responsible for the Rams' 11th run with a two-out double in the fourth.
Stas recorded three strikeouts over five innings to pick up the victory. Yano took the loss, giving up seven runs in 2.1 innings of work.
Both teams had four hits.
Philadelphia hosts East Stroudsburg in a non-conference doubleheader on Tuesday, April 19 at 2:30 p.m.