(BASIL JOHN / THE STATESMAN)
The Seawolves have had a great softball season so far, going 25-9. (BASIL JOHN / THE STATESMAN)

The Stony Brook Softball team’s starting pitching was once again dominant over the weekend, as the Seawolves swept Maine in a three-game set. The three victories extended the team’s winning streak to ten and helped SBU inch closer to clinching the top seed in the America East tournament.

Junior Allison Cukrov was brilliant on the mound on Saturday, throwing back-to-back complete games and picking up victories in both of the day’s contests.

Cukrov started the weekend off by throwing seven shutout innings to power her team to a 1-0 win. She allowed just four hits in the opening game of the series and fanned five.

The game’s only run came in the fourth inning, when sophomore Alexandra Pisciotta singled home pinch runner Lexie Shue. This came after a two-out double by sophomore Melissa Phelan.

In game two of the series, the Seawolves were able to pick up a 3-1 win with the combination of effective small ball on offense and another stellar outing by Cukrov.

It was a heads up base running play by senior Nicole Schieferstein that first got Stony Brook on the board in the game.  In the third inning, Black Bears catcher Rachel Harvey attempted to pick off Scheiferstein at third base. But, instead of retreating back to third, Schieferstein broke for home plate and was able to slide into home safely for the game’s first run.

Later on in the frame, a bunt single by junior Bria Green drove in senior Olivia Mintun to give the Seawolves a 2-0 advantage.

In the fifth inning, Cukrov finally made a mistake, as she gave up a home run to Maine’s Jean Stevens to make it a 2-1 game.

But, junior Shayla Giosia would answer for Stony Brook in the bottom of the fifth with a solo home run to left-center field to once again give SBU a two-run advantage.

Cukrov was able to hold the lead, and pick up her 17th win of the season. She went seven innings, and only gave up one run on two hits in the game.

On Sunday it was sophomore Jane Sallen who took the mound for Stony Brook, and she gave the Seawolves another stellar pitching performance going seven shutout innings in the team’s 2-0 win over Maine.

SBU picked up the only two runs of the game when a double by Giosia drove home Mintun and sophomore Kellie Reynolds. The double was Giosia’s 12th of the season.

Sallen picked up her eight win of the year, and her team picked up its 12th straight conference win on Sunday. Stony Brook also nailed down their sixth shutout of the season in the victory.

SBU’s sweep of Maine came after they swept Quinnipiac in a doubleheader on Thursday. Cukrov once again led the Seawolves, dominating Quinnipiac’s lineup, allowing only one run and four hits over 6 2/3 innings while striking out seven in game two of the doubleheader.

Stony Brook won game one 4-2, and the second game by a score of 8-3. Sallen got the win in game one, allowing two runs over four innings. Catcher Pisciotta led the Stony Brook offence, getting three hits and three RBIs between both games.

In game one, Stony Brook did all of its scoring early, earning two runs in the first and one each in the second and third innings. In game two it was much of the same as SBU scored two runs in the first inning, one in the second and third and opened the game up with four runs in the fourth inning.

After losing the first five games of the season, the Seawolves have gone 25-9. They key to their success has been their incredible pitching, as they have allowed two earned runs or less in 16 of their last 17 contests.

Stony Brook will be back in action on Wednesday, when they host a doubleheader against Temple.

Joseph Ryder contributed to this report.

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