Hurricanes Get Revenge Against Devils

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ADAMS, Mass. — Two teams heading in two completely different directions met up at Russell Field on Wednesday night. When the game was over, those two squads continued on their same distinct paths. 

Led by the dominant pitching of sophomore Caroline Tomkowicz, the Hoosac Valley softball team took full advantage of four Drury errors to earn a 5-1 win at home. The victory not only avenges a 2-0 loss to the Blue Devils last month, but it also gives the Hurricanes (6-7) their fourth win in a row and their sixth victory in the last seven games. 

After starting the season off with a 9-1 record, Drury has now dropped four games in a row. The Blue Devils can blame their defense for their latest loss. Mary Ann Maroni's club made four errors overall, including two big ones in the bottom of the fourth inning that allowed the hosts to score four runs. 

Drury took a 1-0 lead in the top of the frame when senior Lyndsey DeGrenier led off with a triple and later scored on an error by Hoosac shortstop Tori Rumbolt. The Blue Devils only managed one run in the frame, however, leaving two runners stranded on a day when Tomkowicz was very stingy from the circle. Tomkowicz allowed just two hits overall and shut the Drury offense down from there, striking out eight batters and walking two to improve her record to 5-1 this season. 

Rumbolt more than made up for her gaffe in the bottom of the inning, leading off with a double to left field. Junior Alexis Bushika then followed with a single to put runners on first and third base. Drury tried to take out the lead runner by making a fake cut-off throw to the pitcher, but the throw sailed into the outfield, allowing Rumbolt to score and moving Bushika to third base. 

After a walk to junior Ashley Ciepiela, sophomore Jocelyn Duhamel gave the hosts a 2-1 lead with a sacrifice bunt down the first-base line. Another error by the Devils' infield allowed two more runs to score, giving Tomkowicz a commanding 4-1 lead to work with. 

"This was a big win for us, and our team could not have have done a better job at picking themselves up after making some errors during the game," Hurricanes head coach Morgan Shafer said. "Our bats helped us out by putting the ball in play, and Caroline once again did a stellar job. She was throwing her curve for the kill and kept the Drury batters at bay and kept them scoreless for the rest of the game.

"Big plays were made in the outfield as well by Carly Kondel in center, who made four big catches out there to help hold the Drury offense in check."

Hoosac added one more run in the fifth, taking advantage of two more errors by the Devils' infield. Sophomore Cat Record took the loss for Drury, giving up five runs, only two of which were earned, on five hits to drop her record to 9-5 this year. Record struck out six and walked five in a complete-game effort.

"It was a very close, exciting game until the fourth inning, when the wheels came off the bus," Blue Devils head coach Mary Ann Maroni said. "Three hits, one which was a little blooper, two walks and two crucial errors resulted in four unanswered runs for Hoosac. If didn't help that our leadoff batter was put out in six out of seven innings."

The 'Canes will try to keep their hot streak going with a home game against Monument Mountain at 4:15 p.m. on Friday. The Devils, meanwhile, will try to get back on track with a road game against Mohawk at 4 p.m. on the same day. 

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