Blue Devils softball wins two in dramatic fashion

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. — Senior centerfielder Lauren Pixley grabbed a long fly to deep left-center, fell over the retractable fence, and hung on to preserve Fredonia’s 5-4 win over Rhode Island College on the second game of the Blue Devils’ opening day doubleheader Friday. The Blue Devils defeated SUNY Cobleskill, 2-1, in the season-opener.

The sweep-saving catch came in the last of the eighth inning with the bases loaded after the Blue Devils pushed across two runs in the top of the inning. A sacrifice fly by Pixley followed a sacrifice fly by Katelyn Dennis to plate the two Fredonia runs.

Earlier, the Blue Devils trailed 2-1 and were down to their last strike when Rhianna Paoletti smacked an RBI double to left-center, followed by an RBI double to right-center by Katie Yudin.

After Rhode Island College forced extra innings with a run in the last of the seventh, Fredonia took advantage of the international tiebreaker and a misplayed sacrifice bunt to score its two runs in the eighth. Wildness by Fredonia right-hander Sam Seegar set the stage for a potential Rhode Island College comeback — and Pixley’s highlight-reel catch.

Seegar pitched a complete game with seven strikeouts. She also had two hits.

In the opener, Yudin pitched in and out of trouble to stymie SUNY Cobleskill in the opener. She walked five, hit two batters, allowed six hits, but stranded 12 runners, many on the strength of 12 strikeouts. Dennis had an RBI single and Alisa Oppenheimer an RBI groundout to account for the Fredonia scoring.

The Blue Devils are back in action today with games at 10 a.m. and noon vs. Penn College and College of New Rochelle, respectively.