March 4, 2018
TOWSON, Md. - In a weekend filled with tough weather and quality softball, the St. John’s softball team split a pair of games on the final day of the TU Invite on Sunday in Towson, Md.
The Red Storm (4-12) rolled past Quinnipiac, 9-0, in the opener before falling, 6-1, to Bucknell in the weekend finale.
St. John’s used a six-run sixth inning to cruise past Quinnipiac in the morning tilt, highlighted by great performances with the bat and in the circle.
Krystal Puga was a dominant force at the plate for the Johnnies in the morning showdown with the Bobcats, recording three hits, two home runs, and five RBIs.
Madison Morris was also great in the circle, tossing a six-inning, three hit shutout for her third win of the season. The junior struck out eight and did not issue a walk.
Neither side had the bats going in the early portion of the game, with Morris allowing a single on the game’s first batter before retiring the next 12 batters.
St. John’s threatened in the bottom half of the second when a pair of walks to Savannah Warren and Gretchen Bowie put runners on first and second with only one out; however, the Bobcats escaped the threat.
Moving to the fourth, Warren and Bowie started a threat again with back-to-back singles to bring Jessi Bryant to the plate with one away. A walk loaded the bases and a passed ball allowed Warren to scamper home from third to put the Red Storm in front.
Kaitlin Mattera followed with an RBI groundout to double the lead for St. John’s heading into the fifth inning.
The Bobcats finally got their second and third base runners to reach in the top of the fifth, but Morris struck out the side to strand the runners and keep the Red Storm in front.
With one away in the bottom half of the inning, Puga stepped to the plate and launched a solo shot out to right center, pushing the lead to 3-0 after five.
After a 1-2-3 sixth by Morris, St. John’s put the hammer down. After Warren and Bowie again led the inning off with a walk and single, respectively, Amelia Ditolvo loaded the bases with a single up the middle for Elyse Morris. The freshman was struck by a pitch to plate the fourth run of the day, and Lauren Zick followed with a walk to make it 5-0.
With the bases still loaded, Puga sent everyone home with a grand slam to left center for her second round-tripper of the day and ended the game with the 9-0 score.
After erupting for nine runs in the opener, the St. John’s bats were silenced in the weekend finale against Bucknell, falling 6-1.
Ditolvo led the Red Storm at the plate with a pair of hits and a walk to reach three times, while Warren collected an RBI in the loss.
Pitching was the key to the victory for the Bison, with Gefferet tossing a complete game, allowing only five hits, and striking out three.
Bucknell got on the board first in the bottom of the third, tallying a trio of runs thanks to smart base running and some miscues in the outfield by the Johnnies.
The Bison added three in the fourth following a triple, a walk, and a pair of RBI singles all coming in with two outs.
Trailing 5-0 in the sixth, St. John’s started to rally. Puga led the inning off with a walk and Marissa Rizzi smacked a double to put a pair of runners in scoring position with only one out.
Warren delivered an RBI with a sacrifice fly, the Red Storm was unable to get any further runs home.
Bucknell answered with a run of its own in the bottom half of the sixth, and held on for the 6-1 victory.
St. John’s will return to action on Mar. 9 with a doubleheader against Idaho State and Colorado State in Fort Collins, Colo.