Softball takes three of four on week

FRESHMAN PITCHER KRISTINA WELTZIN HURLS the ball toward the plate in the Engineers’ doubleheader sweep of Union College this weekend. Weltzin threw two complete games, striking out eight Dutchwomen batters.

RPI’s first set of games was against non-league opponent Oneonta State. The first game was a battle between the pitchers as neither team could score runs. Freshman Kristina Weltzin shut down Oneonta for six-straight innings and put the Engineers in an excellent position for a positive result. Unfortunately, no runs were scored and, a single with two runners on base in the seventh gave Oneonta the walk-off victory in game one.

RPI came out strong in the second game with just as solid pitching, this time from sophomore Charlene Osmanski. She pitched a complete game, giving up only four hits and one run. However, one run would not be enough for Oneonta this time. In the fourth, with Osmanski and sophomores Tori Hunt and Jen Shields on base, sophomore Dani Grage singled to left center, scoring Osmanski and Hunt. The next batter was senior Samantha Paulding whose double to left field scored Shields and Grage, giving RPI the 4-0 lead.

Oneonta scored its only run in the fifth, but RPI would reestablish its four-run lead in the seventh. Freshman Jocilyn Rudisill reached first with a single and was brought home by a double to left by senior Sara Heller. This gave RPI the 5-1 win as it split the doubleheader.

The following doubleheader on Sunday was against Liberty League rival Union College. Eager to play well, RPI started the opening strong. The Engineers started the scoring in the second as Grage and Paulding hit singles to score runs, giving RPI an early 2-0 lead. Then in the third, Heller reached on an error, and after stealing second, scored on an Osmanski single. RPI scored its final run in the fourth as Heller singled to centerfield to score Rudisill.

The Engineers lead was preserved by another exceptional pitching performance by Weltzin, who pitched a complete game while allowing only two hits. The only blemish was in the sixth when RPI gave up two runs on three hits and an error. Fortunately, the Engineers held onto the lead and the 4-2 victory.

The final game of the weekend for the team featured late runs in large amounts by RPI. Once again, Weltzin shutdown Union to get her 13th win of the season. A sacrifice fly by junior Gillian McCarthy gave them the lead in the first, but Union quickly tied the game in the top of the second. Weltzin kept the game tied for RPI while it was unable to break the tie.

That all changed in the fifth as another McCarthy RBI scored Rudisill. Osmanski singled to center to score McCarthy and Heller. Finally, Hunt cleared the bases with a two-run homerun to left, giving RPI the 6-1 lead. The Engineers finished the scoring in the sixth when Heller hit a two-run single to give the game its final score of RPI 8, Union 1.

The Engineers are now 6-0 in the Liberty League and 17-9 overall. They have a busy schedule ahead of them as they play a doubleheader against Middlebury College today at 3:30 pm. RPI takes on the University of Rochester on Saturday in a doubleheader beginning at 1 pm, and the Rochester Institute of Technology in a Sunday twinbill, also starting at 1 pm. All three games will be played at Doris Robison Field.