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Softball bounces back from loss, splits doubleheader with Colgate

After blowing a seventh-inning lead in game one, the Binghamton softball team evened out the bill with a 12-1 victory over non-conference-rival Colgate on Wednesday.

Franz Lino/Staff Photographer Freshman outfielder Bridget Hunt finished with six hits, six RBIs and two home runs in Wednesday’s doubleheader.

The early game was a back-and-forth affair that saw four lead changes. Senior pitcher Demi Laney looked dominant in the opening two innings, striking out five while allowing no base runners. The Bearcats (19-19, 8-3 America East) got on the board first when sophomore first baseman Lisa Cadogan homered for one run in the bottom of the frame.

Colgate (10-25, 2-10 Patriot) would respond immediately with four runs in the top of the third, granting the Raiders a three-run advantage. Their lead would not last long. In the ensuing inning, freshman outfielder Bridget Hunt unloaded a fastball deep over the right centerfield fence to swing the scoreboard back into BU’s favor.

“[Hunt] has worked really hard,” BU head coach Michelle Burrell said. “We have been working on her recognizing the strike zone. She is starting to get more consistent because of that. She definitely had a great day and I think she will continue to do well.”

Binghamton extended its advantage, thanks to sloppy play by Colgate, and held an 8-5 lead heading into the top of the final inning. At that point, however, BU’s defense fell apart.

To open the frame, freshman pitcher Annika Wiesinger, who entered the game in the sixth, allowed two consecutive one-out hits. The Bearcats would then commit consecutive errors that resulted in two unearned runs by Colgate. Wiesinger was unable to stop the bleeding, allowing six runs in the frame as BU dropped the game, 11-8.

“We just kind of fell apart both defensively and on the mound,” Burrell said. “We needed to be able to pick each other up both defensively and offensively. I don’t think we did that defensively.”

The nightcap was a completely different story. Binghamton fed off the inexperience of Colgate freshman pitcher Gillian Murray, scoring 12 runs in the first three innings. That was sufficient for Binghamton to cruise to its 12-1 victory. The Bearcats’ offensive explosion was led by sophomore left fielder Sydney Harbaugh and Hunt, each of whom finished the game with three hits and three RBIs. Sophomore catcher Taylor Chaffee drove in an additional three runs.

“They realized that they let the first game get away,” Burrell said of her team’s play in game two. “It was something we thought we could control. I really like the way they responded and came back ready to go in game two. I think we did a good job in that regard. “

Freshman pitcher Shelby Donhauser controlled the Colgate lineup, scattering five hits and allowing one earned run while pitching a complete, five-inning game. Donhauser, who entered the game with an 11.20 career ERA, captured her first collegiate victory.

“[Donhauser] did a great job,” Burrell said. “She has been somebody we haven’t been using for entire games. I expect we will use her more, probably not in full games but in two or three innings here or there.”

Binghamton is scheduled to return to action this weekend against conference-rival Maine. First pitch is set for noon Saturday at Kessock Field in Orono, Maine.