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BETHLEHEM, Pa. –
Boosted by three two-out RBI singles from senior Gabi Martinez
and a gritty pitching performance by freshman Kali Magane
, the Boston University softball team opened defense of its Patriot League title with a 6-1 win over Army West Point at Lehigh's Leadership Park.
The Terriers extended their win streak in conference tournaments to 10 games and will next face the top-seed Mountain Hawks on Friday (May 12) with first pitch slated for 11 a.m. Lehigh earlier in the day sent Holy Cross to the loser's bracket with a 9-1 (6) run-rule decision.
Final Score: Boston University 6, Army West Point 1
Records: BU (24-25), Army (35-20)
Venue: Leadership Park – Bethlehem, Pa.
Watch Replay: PatriotLeague.tv
WP: Magane (12-10, 7.0 IP, 6 H, 1 R/ER, 3 K, 2 BB)
LP: Poirier (13-8, 3.2 IP, 7 H, 5 R, 2 ER, 2 BB)
BU Leaders: Martinez (3-3 AB, 4 RBIs, 1 R), Connolly (3-4 AB, 3 R, 1 SB), Heinen (2-4 AB, 1 RBI)
Army Leaders: Kennedy Harrison (2-3 AB), Alee Rashenskas (1-3 AB, 1 RBI)
HOW IT HAPPENED
- After Army left a combined five runners on base in the second and third, the Terriers got on the board first in the bottom half with senior Moriah Connolly hitting an infield single and then later scoring from second on senior Gabi Martinez's two-out RBI single to left.
- During the next at-bat, sophomore Alex Heinen hit a hard grounder that bounced off the diving shortstop's glove into center to push the lead to 2-0.
- The Black Knights struck back against freshman Kali Magane in the fourth by leading off with back-to-back singles and then hitting a two-out infield single to pull within one ... Magane though got out of the jam when 2017 Patriot League Player of the Year and junior Jilee Schanda caught a liner in center field.
- BU needed little time to respond, scoring three runs during the bottom half off an error and three hits, including a double from junior Kaitlin Sahlinger and two-out, two-RBI single by Martinez.
- Matching Martinez's three hits, Connolly added one more run in the sixth by singling up the middle, stealing second and scoring on Martinez's two-out RBI single down the left-field line.
- Despite throwing 126 pitches, Magane got stronger as the game went on, as she retired the last 10 Black Knights to seal the victory.
- With her school-record 39th stolen base, Connolly moved within one of tying the Patriot League season record held by Army's Amanda Nguyen (2013) ... Connolly already owns the PL career record at 114, which is nine shy of Jayme Mask's ('14) school record.
- Thursday's game marked the 10th time in Martinez's career that she collected three hits in a game.
- The Terriers have won their last 10 conference tournament games and have now won their last 15 games against Patriot League competition since being swept at Lehigh at the start of conference play.
- Magane allowed just one run in a complete-game performance for the fifth time this season ... Overall, she has gone the distance 11 times and thrown four shutouts.
- The Terriers will continue the PL tourney on Friday (May 12) at 11 a.m. against regular-season champion Lehigh.
- The Mountain Hawks swept the earlier weekend series at home by a combined score of 30-10 but are still seeking revenge after they fell to BU, 6-1, in the 2016 PL semifinals at home.
- The winner will advance to Saturday's championship round, while the loser will face the winner of the Holy Cross/Army game at 4 p.m. ... The Black Knights and Crusaders are scheduled to face off at 1:30 p.m.