The Seawolves began conference play in Baltimore over the weekend, taking down the UMBC Retrievers two games to one in a three-game series. UMBC won the first game 6-3 but was shut out in the final two games by scores of 8-0 and 7-0, respectively.

In the first game of the series, Stony Brook struggled to find an answer to UMBC junior pitcher Jessica Holte and the UMBC offense. The Retrievers jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the third inning, and they never looked back. The Seawolves gained some momentum and tied the game in the top of the sixth inning, but UMBC came out and put up three runs in the bottom half of the inning to secure the win.

After dropping the first game, the Seawolves were absolutely dominant throughout the final two games. UMBC only managed five hits combined in the two games and was outscored 15-0. A pair of Stony Brook homers and 18 hits ensured that they would start conference play with a winning record.

Sophomore pitcher Maddy Neales started in the circle for game two of the series and had one of the best games of her career. She hurled six shutout innings, allowing just one hit with three walks and nine strikeouts. Her lights-out performance earned the sophomore her third win of the year, evening out her record at 3-3.

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Sophomore third baseman Chelsea Evans was Stony Brook’s most effective hitter in the series, getting five hits in nine at-bats overall. She also hit two home runs and had four runs batted in. Senior outfielder Diane Caruso went 3-for-9 including four RBIs, all of which came in game two. Her two-run home run in the top of the fourth inning was her third of the season, the most on the team.

Senior pitcher Jane Sallen got the nod for the first and third games of the series, and her play improved dramatically from the first game to the last. After giving up six runs on nine hits in 5.2 innings in the first game, she pitched a complete game, four-hit shutout the next day to secure her seventh win of the season. She struck out 11 batters across the two games, five in her first start and six in her second. The shutout was Sallen’s 13th of her career and her second this season.

The Seawolves will head to the Bronx to take on the Manhattan Jaspers this Wednesday at 2 p.m. Stony Brook will return to Long Island to play Maine in a three-game set this Saturday and Sunday at University Field.

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