CLERMONT, Fla. – Cassie Ruscz was the star of the show in this one.
The senior captain belted a grand slam in the second and a two-run double in the third for the Tufts University softball team, as the Jumbos defeated Wellesley College, 12-2, during a five-inning affair on Saturday in Clermont, Florida.
|Sara Willner-Giwerc posted two hits and a run scored for the Jumbos.|
The Jumbos (9-5) concluded their spring-break trip with four consecutive wins. The squad jumped all over the Blue (1-1), by scoring six runs in the second and five in third, to go along with one first-inning run, as the Jumbos led 12-1 at the end of the three.
Junior second baseman Samantha Siciliano went 2-for-3 in a leadoff capacity, as she tallied a pair of singles and scored two runs. Senior left fielder Maggie Hoffman (2-for-2, two singles, two runs scored, RBI) and junior right fielder Raven Fournier (1-for-2, double, three RBIs, two runs scored) also starred in the victory.
Senior Anna Pisac (2-for-3, double, single, two RBIs) and junior Amanda Manning (2-for-3, two singles, run scored) performed well for the Blue. Junior pitcher Raina Galbiati (5-0) was credited with the win for the Jumbos, relinquishing four hits and one earned run, while striking out four batters in three innings of work.
The Blue claimed a 1-0 advantage in the top of the first, as the squad played some small ball. Freshman Sequoia Johnson posted a one-out single to shortstop, and then advanced to second base on a sacrifice bunt by senior Ashtyn Coleman. Pisac then drilled a two-out RBI double to right field, plating Johnson.
The Jumbos evened the score in the bottom half of the inning, as senior first baseman Summer Horowitz was hit by a pitch with one out and the bases load, allowing Hoffman to cross home plate.
The six-run effort in the second is tied for the second-most runs in an inning by the Jumbos this season. Junior Sara Willner-Giwerc, senior captain Carrie Copacino and Siciliano reached base, as the bases were juiced with no one out. Hoffman drove an RBI single to left field, and then Fournier was hit by a pitch, allowing Copacino to step on home plate. Ruscz then crushed her grand slam to left field and the rout was on, as the Jumbos took a 7-1 lead out of the second.
The Jumbos played out the same narrative in the third, as they loaded the bases with no one out for the second straight inning. Fournier cleared a pair of Jumbos off the base path, as she drilled a two-run double to right field, scoring Siciliano and Copacino, and then Ruscz slammed a two-run double to right center, scoring Fournier and freshman Emily Serata.
Junior catcher Sarah Finnigan capped off the scoring for the Jumbos, by recording an RBI single to center field, scoring Ruscz, which gave the Jumbos a 12-1 advantage. The Blue needed to score four runs in the fifth to extend the game, but were only able to generate one, as Manning touched home plate on an RBI single up the middle by Pisac.
The Jumbos will compete in doubleheader action during their home opener on Thursday against Eastern Connecticut State at Spicer Field in Medford, Massachusetts. The first game is set to start at 3 p.m.
Written by Trevor Wenners, Athletic Communications Intern