Kahl and Yuknat throw back-to-back shutouts, Bears sweep Manhattanville

NEW LONDON, Conn.-Freshmen Kristine Kahl and Sammy Yuknat both threw complete game shutouts and the Coast Guard softball team swept Manhattanville College in a non-conference double-header today. In the first game Kahl whirled a two-hitter and recorded a season-high eight strikeouts for Coast Guard (18-11). Yuknat followed that up with a strong performance of her own, scattering just five hits and only allowing one Manhattanville (16-16) runner to reach third base.

Game One: Coast Guard 2, Manhattanville 0

With one out in the bottom of the sixth, freshman Hannah Ingerson lined a two-run single to center to plate senior Holli Bastinck ahead of junior Kaitlin Ward for the game's only two runs.

The Bears posed a serious scoring threat in the bottom of the first as freshman Morgan Kingston's two-out single to center looked like it would score senior Summer Dupler from second but Dupler was gunned down at the plate by sophomore Rosaria Callara to end the inning.

Coast Guard was held without another good scoring opportunity until the fifth. With two down, sophomore Erin Lisko reached on an error by sophomore third baseman Laura Montalto to put runners on the corners. After stealing third, sophomore Jessie Richardson rolled over a ball back to Manhattanville senior starter Katie Pitcher.

Kahl was brilliant throughout, allowing just five base runners. The closest the Valiants best scoring chance against the right-hander came in the third inning. Manhattanville managed to get runners on first and second with just one out but Kahl induced a groundout by senior Brianna Scapperotti that allowed the runners to move up sixty feet apiece. She managed to escape the threat, however, by getting Laura Montalto swinging for strike three.

With one out in the sixth, Bastinck got the inning going with a sharply hit single down the left field line before being lifted for pinch runner, freshman Tara Larkin. Ward followed this up with a double to right as her base hit to a massive bounce over the head of Manhattanville's senior right fielder Kim Angiolillo. Senior Stacia Sarwinski would step to the plate and hit a screamer to shortstop but Callara made a diving grab to preserve the scoreless tie. However, this would set up the crucial at-bat for Ingerson, who would deliver the game-winning runs for the Bears.

Manhattanville tried to mount a comeback in the seventh as sophomore Corey-Bianca Embler delivered a two-out single to right to keep hope alive for the Valiants. Kahl was once again able to escape trouble by getting junior Kirsten Savage to ground out to Ingerson to preserve the victory.

Pitcher worked a complete game in the loss, allowing two (earned) runs on seven Coast Guard hits without yielding a walk.

Kahl extended her scoreless innings streak to 22 1/3, while her eight strikeouts doubled her previous career-high of four, set earlier this season.

Game Two: Coast Guard 3, Manhattanville 0

The Bears scored all the runs they would need in the first inning as they jumped out to a 2-0 lead en route to a 3-0 win over the visitors.

Junior Kelly Grills led off the inning with a base hit to right and moving to second on Lisko's sac bunt. Richardson then drew a walk and a passed ball with Kingston batting put runners on second and third. Kingston grounded out to short but Grills was able to score on the play to give the Bears an early 1-0 advantage. Bastinck then singled through the left side to plate Richardson with the game's second run.

The Bears tacked on an insurance run in the third using some unorthodox tactics. Grills struck out leading off the inning but reached when the passed ball when through the legs of sophomore Arianna Martignetti. Lisko would bunt her over and she would come in to score on a single up the middle by Richardson.

Manhattanville never really seriously challenged to score until the seventh inning against Yuknat. Back-to-back singles by junior Shauna Mulkerin and Callara put runners on first and second with nobody out for pinch hitter, junior Allison Taylor. Yuknat was able to get Taylor to ground into a double play as Kingston took the ground ball to short to the bag by herself and fired across to Grills at first to complete the twin killing. Yuknat then got Montalto to ground out to Lisko to end the game and give the Bears their ninth win in their last 12 contests.

The final line for Yuknat was seven innings, no runs, two strikeouts, five hits allowed, and no walks issued.

The Bears will return to action on Friday, April 19 when they travel to Springfield for a crucial New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference double-header at 3:00.

Post Game Comments from head coach Donna Koczajowski

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