Cardinals Sweep Rangers and Move Into Second Place
WASHINGTON-- The Catholic University's Softball team now sits in second place in the Landmark Conference after Sunday's sweep of Drew University Rangers, 7-3 and 4-3 in the first and second games respectively. The Cardinals went a perfect 4-0 on the weekend in conference games and now sit at 11-9 overall and 5-1 in Landmark and have gotten off to one of the best starts in conference play in recent years. The Red and Black saw a total team effort in both games of the doubleheader and managed to gain some ground on conference-leading Moravian College.
In a 7-3 win in the first game, Catholic University managed to get all of its runs from five hits and was led by senior second baseman Kelly Lukcas (Chesterfield, N.J./Northern Burlington Regional). The second baseman went 2-4 at the plate with a single in the first and a single in the third. Catholic University jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the first and never trailed Drew in the contest. The Rangers made things interesting in the top of the third cutting the lead to one but the Cardinals opened things up with a five-run fifth inning.
Junior Stephanie Clemente (Warren, N.J./Immaculata) pitched another complete game only giving up one earned run and managed to strikeout three batters on the day. This marked the sixth win for the Cardinals when Clemente is pitching in just 11 appearances and she has rung up 23 hitters on the season.
Catholic University got out to an early 2-0 lead in the second game as well and never trailed throughout the game. Tracy Scanlon (North Wales/Gwynedd Mercy Academy) got things going with a bunt in the bottom of the first on a day where she went 3-4 with one RBI and one run scored. Scanlon was driven in by senior Sophie Gage (Baltimore, Md./Mount de Sales) on a two-run double which marked her fifth of the season. Gage is now batting a remarkable .308 on the season and has driven in ten runs on the year. Drew University would answer with two runs of their own in the top of the second after three hits by the Ranger's lineup. CUA answered in the bottom of the third and fourth with a run in each inning.
Both teams left nine runners on base but the difference proved to be pitching once again as Stacie Goddard (Nashua, N.H./Bishop Guertin) got the nod in the second game, giving up only one earned run in seven innings of work.
Catholic University will look to continue their four game win streak against conference rival and league leading Moravian College on Monday, April 13th at 2.30 pm. The Cardinals can gain ground in the playoff race as they look to get back to the Landmark Championship game. Last time these two teams met Moravian came out on top 7-0 and claimed the inaugural conference championship.