WEST HAVEN, Conn. – The Southern Connecticut State University softball team capped off its best regular season in program history with its first Northeast-10 Conference Tournament Championship, as the Owls eliminated the Yellowjackets of AIC on Sunday afternoon at the University of New Haven Softball Field. SCSU defeated AIC by the final score of 12-0 though five innings for its first NE-10 title. Senior Megan Caporossi (Northford, Conn.) led the way with six RBI in the win, automatically sending SCSU to into the NCAA Division II Softball Tournament next weekend.
The victory marked Southern’s ninth consecutive win dating back to the regular season and improved its overall record to 40-11.
Through the first two innings of play, neither team managed to string anything together offensively. However, in the top of the third frame, Caporossi changed all of that with one swing of the bat. Brittany Bucko (Wallington, N.J.) began the rally with a single to leftfield, quickly followed by a Yellowjacket error, leaving Khristle Lee (Aztec, N.M.) at first and Bucko at second. Caporossi stepped into the batters box and laced three-run homerun over the leftfield fence for a 3-0 lead. The blast marked Caporossi’s team-leading 12th of the season.
The Owls kept the bats going in the next inning, tacking on five more runs on six hits. Alyssa Downs (Seymour, Conn.) and Julianne Flood (Poughquag, N.Y.) led off the frame with back-to-back singles through the left side. Bucko proceeded to push the first run across the dish with an RBI single up the middle, followed by an infield single from Lee. After a wild pitch with the bases loaded, Caporossi lined two run double off the leftfield fence, moving to third base on the throw to home. Bucko lifted a sacrifice fly to leftfield to score Caporossi and Alyssa Pagano (Monroe, Conn.) capped off the rally with a solo homerun to leftfield for a 9-0 advantage.
Southern concluded the scoring summary with three runs on three hits in the fifth inning. Downs led off with a solo homerun to leftfield, while Lee and Caporossi both recorded RBI singles through the right side of the infield. The 12 runs scored tallied the second most all season for the Owls.
Sophomore Jayme Larson (Aurora, Colo.) only needed one of those 12 runs, tossing a complete game shutout for her 16th win of the season. She allowed just one hit, one walk and struck out three in the outing.
The Owls return to action May 14 with the opening day of the NCAA Division II Softball Tournament. The NCAA Selection Show will be held on Monday morning at 10 a.m. All of the action can be seen at www.ncaa.com.