Middlebury Splits Pair of Games in Florida

Melanie Mandell picked up three hits during Saturday's two games.
Melanie Mandell picked up three hits during Saturday's two games.

Middlebury split a pair of games on the second day of its spring trip in Florida. The Panthers started with a 5-2 setback against Farmingdale State and taking the second contest with a 6-3 triumph against Juniata on Saturday. Middlebury (3-1) is right back on the field Sunday with two more games, taking on Mount Mary at 9:00 a.m. and Buffalo State at 11:30 a.m.

In the opening game against Farmingdale State (2-10), the Panthers had the best chance to get on the scoreboard early, as Emily Moore belted a triple off the base of the fence in center field. Ram pitcher Jaxie Collard was able to hold Moore at third, retiring the next three batters to keep the game scoreless.

In the top of the third, Farmingdale State took the jumped in front with a two-run single by Kimberly Basile. The lead grew by a run the following inning, as Haley Schmeiser had an RBI triple to extend the lead to 3-0.

Middlebury got on the scoreboard in top of the fifth, as Allison Quigley led off with a double and came around to score on a throwing error.

The Rams tacked on two insurance runs in the top of the sixth, while the Panthers closed the gap to 5-2 in the seventh with Quigley starting the rally. She ripped her second double in as many at bats and scored on a base hit down the left-field line by Melanie Mandell, but Collard prevented Middlebury from getting any closer.

Quigley paced the Panthers at the plate, going 2-2 with two doubles and a pair of runs scored.

Irene Margiotta tossed the first four innings in taking the loss, yielding three runs on seven hits with one strike out, while Quigley gave up two runs (one earned) in the final three innings.

For the Rams, Sierra Cardenales went 3-3 and scored a run. Collard earned the win, allowing only one earned run and scattering four hits with three strike outs.

Against Juniata (5-7), the Panthers opened the scoring in the top of the fourth, scoring three times. Taylor Gardner and Liza Tarr each singled to get on base, before racing home on a triple to center field by Moore. Moore touched home plate one batter later on a base hit to center by Kati Daczkowski for a 3-0 lead.

The Eagles countered in the bottom half of the inning, as Molly Ulrich had a lead-off triple and scored on a wild pitch.

Moore got the run right back for Middlebury, driving home Tarr with her second triple of the contest for a 4-1 margin. Moore trotted home on another triple by the Panthers, as Daczkowski delivered a three-base hit to center field and scored on a wild pitch for a 6-1 advantage.

The Eagles added single runs in the last of the sixth and seventh to make the final 6-3.

The top portion of the batting order came up big for the Panthers, as Mandell, Daczkowski, Tarr and Moore each had two hits. Moore's two hits were both triples and she drove in three runs, while Daczkowski had two RBI and Mandell added a double. Emily Morris improved to 2-0 on the season with her first collegiate complete game. She allowed three runs (two earned) on eight hits with two strike outs and three walks.

Ulrich and Christi Lerchan each went 3-4 for Juniata, while starting pitcher Anna Baran allowed six runs in 5.1 innings.