Releases

For Immediate Release: March 26, 2011
Contact: David O'Brian (dobrian@binghamton.edu)
Phone: 607-777-6478

BU softball breaks out the bats, sweeps Hartford 10-2 and 14-4
Phillips, Whitaker and Blessing all homer twice in record-setting day

Game 1 Box Score: Binghamton 10, Hartford 2
Game 2 Box Score: Binghamton 14, Hartford 4

EAST HARTFORD, Conn. -- Sophomore outfielder Jessica Phillips, junior third baseman Colleen Whitaker and freshman outfielder Anna Blessing all homered twice, powering Binghamton (9-7, 2-0 AE) to a sweep over Hartford (3-13, 0-2 AE) in an America East softball doubleheader on Saturday afternoon. The Bearcats took a 10-2, five-inning decision in the first game before gaining a 14-4, six-inning win in the nightcap.

In the second game, Binghamton hit a school-record six home runs. The previous record of four home runs was set against Siena on April 21, 2005 and equaled against Colgate on April 21, 2010.

The sweep also marked the first time the Bearcats have scored 10 or more runs in back-to-back games in their 10-year NCAA Division I era. Binghamton last accomplished that feat as a Division II program when it beat New Haven 10-2 on April 24, 1999 and shut out New Hampshire College 14-0 three days later.

"Our offense did an excellent job in coming out and scoring runs," head coach Michelle Burrell said. "We kept the momentum up every inning and each one of our players contributed today."

Phillips, who has now homered in three straight games, finished the day 5-for-6, scored five runs, hit a grand slam and drove in six runs. It was her grand slam that highlighted a six-run top of the second inning in the opening game. With Binghamton already up 3-0, Phillips blasted a pitch over the center field wall. Earlier in the inning, Blessing led off with a home run.

Hartford got a pair of runs back in the bottom of the third inning on a two-run double by Lauren Karmena. Binghamton, however, stretched the lead to 10-2 in the top of the fourth inning. Phillips belted a one-out double and senior catcher Deannie Plemon followed with an RBI double. Whitaker then cleared the bases with a two-run home run.

Senior first baseman Stephanie DeLuca went 3-for-3 with a career-high two doubles. It marked the first two-double game by a Binghamton player since Whitaker's older sister Jessica did the same against Stony Brook on April 22, 2007.

Sophomore pitcher Rhoda Marsteller got the win, improving her record to 2-3. Nicole Springer took the loss and is now 0-2.

In the nightcap, it was a 10-run top of the sixth inning, which included four home runs, that blew the game open. Whitaker and Blessing led off the frame with back-to-back home runs. After Phillips delivered a two-run double, Plemon belted a three-run home run. DeLuca tacked on two more runs with the final home run of the inning.

The four home runs in an inning in the most the Bearcats have hit in a single frame during their 10-year Division I era. Furthermore, the 10 runs is the most that Binghamton has scored in an inning since they plated 11 runs against Hartford on April 17, 2010.

Phillips opened the scoring in the second game with a solo home run in the top of the first inning. One inning later, freshman second baseman Lisa Cutrona drilled a two-run home run, increasing the lead to 3-0. It was the first home run of her career.

The Hawks pulled to within 3-2 in the bottom of the second inning on a two-run homer by Jordan Haines. Binghamton then answered in the top of the fourth inning on a RBI double by Blessing, stretching the lead to 4-2.

That set the stage for the decisive top of the sixth inning. That frame would prove to be the difference, as the Hawks scored twice in the bottom of the sixth inning before leaving the bases loaded when the game ended.

Junior pitcher Kristen Emerling was credited with the win, improving her record to 3-2. Kaitlyn Meade was tagged with the loss and is now 2-5.

Plemon finished the day 3-for-8 with a double, a home run and five RBI. Blessing was 4-for-6 with four runs and four RBI. Whitaker ended up 3-for-7 with three runs and three RBI while DeLuca, who is now hitting .310, was 6-for-7 in the two games.

Binghamton and Hartford conclude their three-game series on Sunday at noon.

NOTES: Binghamton has now hit two grand slams this season. Junior outfielder Megan Tucker hit the first one against St. John's on March 19 ... with the two wins over Hartford, the Bearcats are assured of winning their first conference series on the road since taking two out of three games at Vermont on May 7-8, 2005 ... in 16 games this season, Binghamton has now hit 19 home runs ... Phillips, who came into the series leading the America East in batting, is now hitting .489 with six home runs and 22 RBI. She also has a 1.021 slugging percentage and a .593 on-base percentage ... in five games this season, Blessing is batting .500 and has scored six runs.

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