With the softball season now starting to take shape, both teams kicked off a double-header to start conference play in the MEAC. Delaware State kicked off their conference schedule strong, sweeping the Hawks in two tough 3-2 contests.
Pitching was strong from both teams in the series where all four starters threw complete games. Hannah Shields needed just 80 pitches to shut the door on the Hawks and grab her first collegiate win in game one.
Despite receiving the loss in game one, Adrienne Guerra was also dominate in the circle for the Hawks. Guerra allowed just six hits and two earned runs, while striking out eight Hornets in her six innings of work.
Both team’s grabbed all their runs in just one inning. Delaware State struck first after MacKenzie Brown dropped a ball in right field allowing Jordan Casey to score from third. Danielle Velez then drove a single into right field to plate two more for the Hornets, opening up a 3-0 lead.
The Hawks were able to answer with two runs of their own in the top of the fourth inning. Sara Jo Whaley came through with a base-hit single, grabbing two RBIs and cutting the Hornet lead to just one.
Then Shields locked went to work to lock down the Hawks. Shields allowed just two hits the remainder of the game, and had a three up three down seventh inning. The win snaps an 11-game losing streak for the Hornets, their last win coming on March 3.
In game two pitching continued to be the story for both clubs.
Jessica Shalongo allowed just four hits to the Hawks, one earned run and striking out eight batters. Erin Hallman had a solid outing for University of Maryland Eastern Shore allowing seven hits and just three earned runs.
Errors by the Hornets allowed the Hawks to jump out first in game two at the top of the third. But Sabrina Quarles knotted the game back up swiftly with a solo blast to left at the bottom part of the frame.
Two runs in the fourth gave Delaware State their first lead of game two, thanks to a wild pitch by Hallman that allowed Kayleigh Berry to score. A two-out single by Micaela Cummings added another insurance run for the Hornets.
A run in the sixth by the Hawks cut the lead down to 3-2, but Shalongo replicated Shields by sending down the Hawks in order in the seventh to end the game.
Delaware State got their second and third wins of the year moving to 3-15 this season, but 2-0 in MEAC play. Meanwhile, the Hawks drop to 2-10 on the season.
The Hawks head off to Savannah, Georgia on Tuesday for a double-header versus Savannah State. The Hornets open up a three-game series versus Norfolk State Saturday and Sunday.