YORK, Pa. – The York College softball team lost both games of a doubleheader against Eastern Mennonite at Spartan Stadium on Thursday afternoon. The Spartans fell just short in both games. The Royals earned an 8-6 and then a 5-4 victory.
With the loss, the Spartans have now lost six straight and are 4-14 overall. Eastern Mennonite improves their overall record to 14-6.
During the first game, the Spartans jumped out to quick 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first. Senior Hannah Hugel (Paoli, Pa./Conestoga) started things off by reaching first on a field error by the Royals. Hugel scored off of a single up the middle from Jena Ruby (Hampstead, Md./North Carroll).
Eastern Mennonite answered back with two runs of their own in the second. The Royals took advantage of an early York error to gain the lead.
The Green and White's bats got hot in the bottom of the third. In their biggest inning of the game, the Spartans scored five runs on six hits. Hugel bunted and due to a throwing error by the third baseman was able to advance to second. Freshman Kayleen Bell (Herndon, Va./Westfield) scored off of Hugel's bunt. Up next, Cara Rubinaccio (Boonton, N.J./Morris Knolls) had a shot out to right field that allowed Hugel to cross the plate. Then Sara Thacker (Ijamsville, Md./Urbana) slammed the ball out to right field as Rubinaccio scored. The last to score in the inning was designated player Payton Hill (Staunton, Va./Fort Defiance). A single up the middle from Sarah Harris (Collegeville, Pa./Methacton) helped Hill to score.
The Spartans were able to hold onto their 6-2 lead heading into the fifth inning, but unfortunately Eastern Mennonite broke out with the largest inning of the contest in the top of the fifth. The Royals once again took advantage of Spartan errors. York had three errors in the inning, allowing the Royals to get six runs on five hits.
Despite having three more innings to regain the lead, the Spartans could not get their offense going again.
Hugel paced the Green and White on offense. She finished 2-for-3 with two runs scored. Hill went 2-for-4 from the plate with one run. Thacker and Rubinaccio both finished 1-for-3 with one RBI and a run.
Freshman pitcher, Morgan Levine (Oakland, N.J./Indian Hills) suffered the loss. Levine threw for 4.2 innings. She allowed eight runs on eight hits, with one walk and one strikeout. Coming in to relieve was senior Cory Urkuski (Mohnton, Pa./Twin Valley). Urkuski allowed two hits, with one walk and two strikeouts in 2.1 innings.
The Royals were led on offense by first basemen Angelina Miller. She finished the game 2-for-4 with two runs and one RBI.
In the circle, Kaitlyn Morris was credited with the win. Morris pitched 4.2 innings. She allowed zero runs on five hits, with one walk and four strikeouts.
In the second game of the day, the Spartans fought hard to come back from an early deficit, but fell just short. Eastern Mennonite started things off with two runs in the first inning. The Royals added to their lead with two more runs in the top of the third and one in the top of the fourth.
Down 5-0, the Spatans were able to get some offense started in the bottom of the fourth. York cut Eastern Mennonites lead to two with a three run inning. A single up the middle of the field from Hill allowed Ruby to score. Freshman Jessica Canami (Bel Air, Md./C. Milton Wright) recorded a run off a single to right field from Thacker. Thacker went on to score the final run of the inning off a crisp single up the middle from Urkuski.
The Spartans cut the lead again in the bottom of the fifth. Hill slammed the ball just inside the left field line and helped Ruby to run home. Down just one run, the Green and White could not find the answer they needed to get the victory.
Leading the way offensively in the second game was Hill. She finished 2-for-3 from the plate and had two RBI's. Ruby went 1-for-4 with two runs scored, while Thacker went 1-for-3 with one run and one RBI.
Urkuski was credited with the loss in the circle. She tossed the first two innings, allowing four runs on five hits, with one walk. Thacker made her first pitching appearance of the season as a reliever. She pitched 5.0 innings, allowing one run on six hits and one strikeout.
Eastern Mennonite's offense was powered by Molly Smith during the second game. Smith finished 3-for-4 with one run and two RBI's. Aislinn Lucas was 2-for-3 and recorded one run.
Smith was also strong in the circle for the Royals, earning the win. She pitched 4.1 innings, allowing four runs on eight hits and two strikeouts. Jordan Aylor came in as relief and was credited with the save. She threw for 2.2 innings and only allowed one hit.
The Spartans return to action on Saturday, March 30 as they host Salisbury University in a Capital Athletic Conference doubleheader. First pitch for game one is set for 1:00 pm.