The Central Connecticut softball team blasted six runs in the top of the sixth inning to claim their eighth-straight win on Sunday afternoon over Bryant in game one of a doubleheader in Smithfield, RI before dropping game two 7-2.
With the split, the Blue Devils record moves to 21-12 (7-3 NEC) while Bryant closes the weekend at 22-15 (8-2 NEC).
Junior Laura Messina pitched both games for CCSU for the second day in a row. She tallied eight strikeouts in game one while allowing five hits and just one earned run. In game two, she added eight strikeouts, allowed nine hits and walked two. She closes the weekend with a 17-9 record.
Central put the first run on the board in the top of the second on an RBI bunt from sophomore Evie Rentzel, only to be tied up again in the bottom of the inning on a CCSU throwing error.
Bryant took the lead in the bottom of the fourth on a lead-off homer from Elle Madsen making it 2-1 Bulldogs.
The Blue Devils responded in the top of the fifth on a sacrifice fly from sophomore Eileen Purcell. Purcell drove in freshman Alexis Debrosse, who singled up the middle, to tie the game 2-2 before CCSU broke the game open in the sixth.
Central posted seven hits and six runs leaving just one on base in the sixth with a two-out rally sparked by a Tessa Brown single up the middle to drive in sophomore Hannah Cooper, who singled. Junior Kat Malcolm blasted a two-run single to left field before Purcell singled down the right field line to bring home another. Freshman Sarah Drazin wrapped it up with a double to right center to score Purcell and Malcolm.
CCSU added two additional runs in the top of the seventh to clinch the win.
Central posted 17 hits in 38 at bats while leaving 11 on base and committing two errors. The Bulldogs notched just five hits in 25 at bats, leaving six on base and registering one error.
Blue Devil offensive leaders included Malcolm with three hits, one run and three RBI along with Cooper (three hits, two runs) and senior Arielle Bruno (three hits, two runs). Each member of the CCSU squad registered at least one hit in game one.
Bryant rebounded in game two for a 7-2 win over the Blue Devils. CCSU got on the board first in the top of the second on a single through the left side by freshman Sami Duffy. Duffy drove in Malcolm who reached base on error.
Bryant scored three in the bottom of the fourth to take a 3-1 lead.
CCSU added one more in the top of the sixth before Bryant exploded in the bottom of the inning for four more to seal the game.
Sophomore Evie Rentzel lead CCSU on offense going 3-for-3 at the plate. Cooper added two more.
The Blue Devils posted eight hits in 29 at bats leaving seven on base while the Bulldogs registered nine hits in 28 at bats, leaving nine on base. CCSU tallied three errors compared to one for Bryant.
Central returns to action this Friday, April 18 when they travel to Saint Francis U for a doubleheader beginning at 1 p.m.