Jill Gately '15 & Sam Epstein '12 Sparkle at the Plate, Dana Levy '12 & Haylle Reidy '15 Shine on the Mound as Softball Sweeps Hamilton, Then Beats CGA, Loses to Williams

Wesleyan extended its winning streak against Hamilton to 19 games with a pair of victories Sun., April 1, 10-2 in six innings and 9-1 in five innings. Wesleyan also swept the season series against Hamilton with the wins, as Wesleyan had defeated the Continentals 4-3 Fri., March 30. Wesleyan improved to 7-10 on the year and 3-0 in NESCAC West play

Jill Gately '15 (#17, photo lower left) sparked the Wesleyan offense in the first game, going 3-for-4 and finishing a single shy of hitting for the cycle. Gately put Wesleyan on the board in the 1st inning with a one-out, two-run home run that plated Allee Beatty '13, who had led off with an infield single. Wesleyan extended its lead to 4-0 in the 3rd, with Gately accounting for both runs. With one out, Tori Redding '13 reached on an infield single, and Gately followed with a triple to deep right. Sam Epstein '12 (#11, photo upper right) then smacked a grounder up the middle that rolled all the way to the center-field fence for a double, allowing Gately to score with the Cardinals' fourth run.

Wesleyan made it a 6-0 game in the 4th. Ashley McLaren '13 led off with another grounder up the middle that rolled to the wall, allowing McLaren to scamper to third. Marissa Davila '14 followed with a ground ball to short that scored McLaren; Davila was safe at first on an error. Alex Sarkowsky '14 followed with a fielder's choice grounder, advanced to second on a groundout by Beatty, and scored on a double by Redding.

Dana Levy '12 (#10, photo upper left) cruised through the first five innings on the mound, allowing only one hit and retiring the side in order in the 3rd, 4th and 5th innings. Hamilton broke up Levy's shutout in the 6th with a two-run homer.  Levy ended up with a four-hitter with three strikeouts and two walks.  Wesleyan added four runs in the bottom of the inning to end the game. A two-out double by Gately scored Davila, who had led off with a single, and Beatty, who had walked, before Epstein followed with a single to drive in Gately. Amy Lindland '14 pinch-ran for Epstein and advanced to second on a dropped throw by the second baseman on a fielder's choice grounder. Levy then doubled to left, scoring Lindland with the 10th and final run.

Epstein belted a pair of home runs and drove in five in the second game. She gave Wesleyan a 3-0 lead in the bottom of the first, launching a one-out bomb over the center-field fence following a bunt single by Beatty and walk by Redding. Wesleyan doubled its advantage in the second frame, thanks in part to a two-run round-tripper by Epstein. With out out, Beatty reached on an infield single, stole second and advanced to third on an errant throw from left field following a flyout. With four stolen bases during the double-header, Beatty became the Wesleyan all-time leader for base thefts with 77, eclipsing the previous mark of 73. Gately followed with an infield single to plate Beatty before Epstein again sent one out of the park for a 6-0 lead.

Hamilton cut its deficit to 6-1 in the 4th, with a walk followed by a two-out double.  Wesleyan, however, added three more runs in the bottom of the inning on a Hamilton error and run-scoring singles by Chrissy Bello '12 and McLaren.

Hamilton threatened in the top of the fifth, putting two runners on after two quick outs but Haylle Reidy '15 (#14, photo lower right) got a called strike three to end the game.  She allowed just four hits and struck out four.

Wesleyan has swept Hamilton every season since NESCAC divisional series expanded from two games to three in 2007. Wesleyan held a slim 8-7 lead in the preceding 15 games, as the teams split the annual doubleheader each year from 2001-06 except for 2002 (Hamilton sweep) and 2004 (Wesleyan sweep) and also met in Florida three times in the late 1990s.
Wesleyan traveled to Coast Guard on Wed., April 4 for a single game in its next action.  Wesleyan improved to 11-18 all-time vs. the Bears with an 8-4 win.  Getchell went the distance on the mound, allowing six hits and four runs with seven strikeouts.  The Cardinals produced eight hits, two each by Beatty and Redding.  Wesleyan blew open a tight game in the top of the 5th with five runs, adding to its 3-1 margin at the time.  Big blows in the frame were a two-run single by Bello and a two-run single by Alexis Kral '12.  The Cardinals played errorless ball for the second straight game and have committed just two miscues since returning from Florida.  Over the four games, Wesleyan has a .980 fielding percentage.

Wesleyan was hoping to keep all cylinders clicking when it headed into a big NESCAC West series vs. Williams, starting with a home game Fri., April 6.  It didn't quite go the Cardinals' way, however, as the Ephs rolled to an 18-4 victory in five innings.  Hits and runs were plentiful for Williams over the first three innings as the Ephs scored 12 times on 11 hits.  A six-run 5th locked up the mercy-win decision.  Beatty and Redding accounted for four of Wesleyan's five hits in the game as each went 2-for-3 while scoring a run and knocking in a run. 

The squads close out their conference series Sat., April 7 with a double-header in Williamstown, Mass.  Both games will be webcast beginning at 2 p.m.