The 2017 season is off to a great start for Baruch College’s women’s softball team, which is enjoying its best start in team history. The team won three out of four games at the Virginia Wesleyan College Beach Blast in Virginia Beach, Virginia, to kick off the season. The next three games, which pitted the Bearcats against the College of Saint Elizabeth, Purchase College and St. Joseph’s College were postponed due to weather conditions. The Baruch softball team finally took the field again on Tuesday, Mar. 21, against Yeshiva University. The Bearcats are now 5-1, keeping their red-hot winning streak alive.
In their first game of the season, the Bearcats edged Lancaster Bible College with a tight final score of 6-5. The game was close, each team scoring one point in the first inning and remaining deadlocked until the fifth inning. It was then that the Bearcats exploded for five runs, led by Cassandra Lagana, who finished with three hits, two runs and an RBI, and Christina Chin, who finished with two hits, one run and an RBI.
In the next match against Eastern University, Baruch scored three runs in the first inning and had a solid lead until the fifth inning, when Eastern scored six runs against the Bearcats. The game remained neck to neck, with the Bearcats managing a 9-8 score thanks to two runs in the sixth inning. The lead was short-lived, however, as Eastern University pulled through in the seventh inning, scoring four points and finishing the game 13-8.
Even though the Bearcats fell short, they had an outstanding batting lineup. Five players—Chin, Nicole Bellini, Katherine DelRosario, Olivia Dellston and Juliann Gross—had two hits each. Chin hit a triple with Bellini and DelRosario each recording a double. Lagana, Kaitlyn Vichas, and Chae Padron had one hit each for a total of 13 hits against Eastern University.
The Bearcats had an even more successful day on Saturday, March 4, against SUNY Cobleskill and Notre Dame of Maryland University. Lagana again established her offensive presence, finishing with two hits, two RBIs and one run scored. Chin and Dellston each had a big game, Dellston with two hits and four RBIs and Chin recording a hit each times she was at bat, three times total. Baruch had 12 hits against SUNY Cobleskill and ended the game 9-7.
The game against SUNY Cobleskill was more of a nail-biter. Cobleskill had scored four points in the second inning for a 6-2 lead. The Bearcats mounted a premier comeback beginning in the fifth inning, picking up six quick to push them ahead.
Baruch was ahead the entire time in the game against Notre Dame of Maryland University, sparked by three points in the first inning. The score was 8-4 by the sixth inning but the Bearcats showed no mercy and scored an additional four points. The Bearcats had a unrelenting batting lineup, with all nine players finishing with at least one hit. Bellini, Dellston, DelRosario, Jacqueline Gioia, Kristen Podlovits and Jasmine Rodriguez each had two hits. Baruch had a total of 15 hits, ending the rout against Notre Dame of Maryland University with a final score of 12-4.
Following two weeks of postponed games, the Bearcats took the field once again on March 21 against Yeshiva University. The Bearcats played a double header and came out on top of both games. In the first of consecutive matches against Yeshiva, Lagana had three hits and scored three runs, complemented by Bellini’s four hits and two runs. Dellston and DelRosario were also in on the action, each racking up two hits. The Bearcats proved their batting skills once again, getting 15 hits with 12 runs. They scored three points in the first inning and the score remained 3-0 until the Bearcats scored another eight points in the fourth inning and finished the game 12-2.
The Bearcats easily defeated Yeshiva University again in the second game. Baruch gained a huge lead in the second inning, scoring 13 points. Chin finished with four RBIs, Podlovits with three runs scored and Dellston sealed the deal with two hits. The Bearcats easily posted 15 points due to the five walks pitched by Yeshiva University throughout the game. Both games ended in five innings.
With five wins and one loss so far this season, the Baruch College softball team currently has the best starting record it has ever had. Just last year, the team was 0-6, losing the first six games of the season.
Undoubtedly, the dramatic turnaround in fortune can be attributed to an elite-level batting lineup. The Bearcats have a talented rotation that is quickly wearing down pitchers and lighting up the stat sheet. Moreover, the production is consistent throughout the entire batting order—the offense is a true team effort, not a one-woman-show.
On defense, the Bearcat’s team chemistry matches that of a professional team, playing swiftly to neutralize offensive attempts, rarely committing costly errors. The team has talent across the board and is composed to produce consistent team wins.
The Bearcats will soon face rivals Hunter College on April 1, sure to put the team’s talent to the test. Until then, Baruch will face College of Mount Saint Vincent on March 23 and SUNY Old Westbury on the 28. For the time being, Baruch sits comfortably atop the CUNYAC season, as the rest of the pack struggles to put together wins.
Baruch’s closest opposition is the Dolphins of the College of Staten Island, who boast a 5-3 record. If the Bearcat’s current production is any indication of the season to come, the team is on pace to break some records by the season’s end.