Baltimore, Md – Senior third baseman Kaelin Jackson (Export, Pa./Franklin Regional) had a big day at the plate, going 4-for-8 with two home runs and three RBIs, while classmate Kelly Lane (Albany, N.Y./Colonie Central) had a big two RBI single and a three inning save to lead the UMBC Softball team (5-14) to a split on Sunday afternoon.
Junior Kim Puccio (Sparta, N.J./Sparta) and Lane combined to throw a 5-0 shutout against Lafayette in the first game , but the Retrievers would drop a close 5-3 decision to Morgan State (7-8) in the second game of the day to conclude the tournament.
Jackson got the offense rolling early as she blasted a no-doubt homer to left center field to put the Retrievers up 1-0 in the first inning. The fireworks would continue in the second inning, as Lane would get her big two-run single to right center to score Maddie Daigneau (New River, Ariz./Boulder Creek) and Kinsey Shifflett (Smithsburg, Md./Smithsburg). A Carly Lesko (New Milford, N.J./New Milford) single advanced Lane to second, and she would score on Tori Alexander (Woodbridge, Va./Woodbridge Senior) single. Lesko and Alexander would both. Lesko would eventually score on a passed ball later in the inning to put UMBC up 5-0. That would be all the scoring needed in the game to aid the pitching staff.
Puccio and Lane would give up a combined four hits, while allowing three walks and getting two strikeouts. Puccio went four innings to pick up her second win of the season, followed by Lane who went the remaining three innings to pick up her third save of the season.
The Retrievers drew first blood in the third inning. After a Daigneau single, Jackson hit a rocket to the shortstop that hit off her shoulder and ricocheted into center field. The ricochet allowed Daigneau to get to third and gave Jackson a reason to try to stretch it to second. The attempt to get Jackson out at second allowed Daigneau touch home plate to put UMBC on the board.
Morgan State would respond with one in the fourth inning and a four-spot up in the fifth inning to go up 5-1. UMBC would fight back in the bottom half of the fifth, as Jackson's second monster homer of the day, a two-run shot to left, would cut the lead to 5-3, but that would be as close as the Retrievers would get.
Daigneau also extended her personal streak of reaching base safely in all 14 games she's played in her career, and has recorded at least one hit in 12.
The Retrievers will be back in action Wednesday night, as they travel to the nation's capital to play the Howard Lady Bisons with first pitch scheduled for 7:00 pm.