Softball Extends Winning Streak to Three with 3-1 Victory over University of Chicago on Saturday

CLERMONT, Fla. – Junior Raina Galbiati recorded the game-winning, two-run double in the sixth inning and freshman pitcher Gillian O'Connor gave up no earned runs in a complete-game victory for the Tufts University softball team during a 3-1 win over the University of Chicago on Saturday in Clermont, Florida. 

Maggie Lebinski scored the go-ahead run in the sixth for the Jumbos.

The Jumbos (8-5), who have won three consecutive games, were tied at one with the Maroons (7-3) in the top of the sixth. Senior captain Cassie Ruscz drew a one-out walk, and then freshman Maggie Lebinski stole second base as a pinch runner. Freshman third baseman Jamie Stevens singled to left field, advancing Lebinski to third. 

Galbiati entered the batter's box with one out and runners on the corners, as she proceeded to clock a two-run double to center field. Lebinksi scored the game-winning run, while Stevens also crossed home plate, giving the Jumbos a 3-1 cushion. 

Stevens went 2-for-3 (two singles, two runs scored) for the Jumbos, while junior second baseman and leadoff hitter Samantha Siciliano went 2-for-4 with a pair of singles. Freshman Holli Jones went 2-for-3 at the plate with two singles for the Maroons. 

This matchup should definitely be characterized as a pitchers' duel, with only a total of 10 hits in the contest. O'Connor allowed only four hits and walked two batters, facing 27 hitters in her seven-inning winning effort.

Freshman pitcher Megan Stoppelman struck out four batters, gave up four hits, walked two batters and relinquished one run, as she faced 21 batters in 5 1/3 innings of work. Junior pitcher Molly Moran was tagged with the loss for the Maroons, as she gave up a pair of earned runs and two hits in 1 2/3 innings of relief. 

The Jumbos leaped onto the scoreboard in the top of the second, as Stevens belted a leadoff single to center field. Stevens kept moving on the base path, as she stole second base, and then advanced to third on a strikeout by freshman left fielder Annika Han. Junior shortstop Sara Willner-Giwerc stepped up in the clutch, driving a two-out RBI single to right field, scoring Stevens. 

The Maroons responded in the bottom half of the second, as they did all the damage in the frame with two outs. Freshman Danielle Allen reached first base on an error by the shortstop, and then advanced to second on a passed ball. Junior Sara Koniewicz stepped up with an RBI single to center field, plating Allen, as the score was knotted at 1-1. 

Stoppelman worked her way into a groove on the mound for the Maroons, as she did not relinquish any hits during the third and fourth innings. O'Connor posted 1-2-3 innings in the third, fourth and fifth, with eight of the nine outs coming on infield ground outs. The Montgomery, New Jersey, native retired 10 consecutive batters, ranging from the second to the fifth inning. 

Written by Trevor Wenners, Athletic Communications Intern

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