Stony Brook Softball locked in a No. 4 seed in the America East Championships after winning the first game and splitting the ensuing doubleheader in a three-game series against Albany to cap off the regular season Friday and Saturday at University Field.
Winning the first two games of the series 8-0 and 11-3, the Seawolves fell to the Great Danes in the series finale, 9-5.
Stony Brook hit a season-high four home runs to blow out Albany 8-0 in the first game of the series.
The win was head coach Megan Bryant’s 800th career win. She is the 47th coach in NCAA Division I history and the 26th active coach to reach 800 wins.
Senior catcher Allie Pisciotta got off to a hot start, hitting a home run in her first at-bat of the day. After senior infielder Kellie Reynolds walked, senior outfielder Diane Caruso blasted a home run of her own, giving the Seawolves a 3-0 lead to close out the first inning.
Caruso hit another two-run home run in the bottom of the second inning. She, Reynolds and Pisciotta all scored in the four-run inning.
Sophomore infielder Chelsea Evans hit the final Stony Brook home run of the game in the third.
Not only did the Seawolves have a strong offensive showing, their defense played a big role in the win. The Great Danes did not get a single hit up until the third inning.
In game two, senior first baseman Melissa Phelan, one of seven seniors recognized during the team’s Senior Day, broke open a tight 2-1 game with a one out grand slam, establishing a 6-1 Stony Brook lead and rounding out a five-run third inning.
Replicating this offensive barrage, the Seawolves posted another five-run clip in the fourth inning.
After consecutive singles off the bats of Pisciotta and Reynolds, Pisciotta would advance to third on an error by Albany’s third baseman. Reynolds followed by stealing second, setting up a no-out, two runners in scoring position scenario.
Caruso promptly made the most of her opportunity, driving both runners home with a single to right field.
Adding to the bat shelling, Evans smacked a two-run shot, putting her team ahead 9-1 in a game that culminated in a 11-3 Stony Brook win.
Sophomore pitcher Maddy Neales gave up three runs, walked four and struck out eight in five innings of work, good for her ninth win of the season, raising her 2016 record to 9-7.
The second game of Saturday’s doubleheader did not go as well for the Seawolves.
The Great Danes entered the sixth inning with a 4-3 lead, when Neales, who came in for two innings of relief, hit Albany shortstop Maggie Cocks to load the bases. Junior designated hitter Elizabeth Snow sent a bases-clearing double into right field.
Albany then tacked on another two runs in the seventh and although Stony Brook responded with a pair of its own, it proved too little too late as the Great Danes secured a 9-5 win.
After the series, Stony Brook ended its season with a 24-22-2 record, going 11-6 in conference play.
Stony Brook will begin the America East Championships when it faces the No. 5 seed UMBC on Wednesday. The Seawolves won two of three regular-season matchups against the Retrievers. Stony Brook was also seeded fourth in 2013, when it went on to win the conference championship.