NEW HAVEN, Conn.- Jessica Rosa (Wallingford, Conn.) connected on a bases loaded RBI single in the bottom of the 10th inning to send the No. 16 nationally ranked Southern Connecticut softball team past Stonehill and into the next round of the Northeast-10 Conference Tournament Tuesday afternoon at Pelz Field. SCSU defeated the Skyhawks 4-3.
The Owls improved their record to 38-8. Southern struck first in the bottom of the first inning. Brittany Bucko (Wallingford, N.J.) led off with a double into left field. Bucko would later advance to third on a passed ball. Alyssa Downs(Seymour, Conn.) followed with an RBI single sending home Bucko to put SCSU ahead 1-0. Stonehill battled back in the top of the third inning evening the score 1-1. The game would remain deadlocked until the bottom of the fifth inning. With two outs, Bucko hit a homerun blast to left field, putting SCSU back on top 2-1 going into the top of the sixth.
The Skyhawks stayed persistent and added two runs in the top of the seventh inning to give Stonehill their first lead of the game. Southern began their rally in the bottom of the seventh inning with Stacy Pouliot’s (Mystic, Conn.) triple down the right field line. Julie Muscarella (Suffield, Conn.) followed suit with a sacrifice fly to right field bringing home Pouliot and evening the score at 3-3.
The game continued into extra innings. Both teams had chances, but were unable to execute. Southern got its chance in the bottom of the 10th inning. A sacrifice bunt by Nicole Buch (Darien, Conn.) sent Bucko to second. Bucko then advanced on a wild pitch putting the junior into scoring position. Kristin Whitley (North Andover, Mass) was walked on the next at bat. Downs was then intentionally walked to load the bases. With two out, Rosa blasted an RBI single through the left side sealing the tournament win for the Owls.
Jayme Larson (Aurora, Colo.) picked up her 20th win of the season. The senior only allowed six hits and struck out eight batters in 10.0 innings pitched.
Southern will face the winner of the Le Moyne/UMass-Lowell match –up Friday at Pelz Field at 10 a.m.