Feb. 23, 2014
GREENSBORO, N.C. -
Freshman right-hander Kristen West hurled Army to its first win of the season and classmate Marah House's three-run home run in the top of the fifth inning snapped a 1-1 tie in propelling the Black Knights to a 4-2 victory over George Washington the final day of the Spartan Classic.
The win snapped Army's eight-game losing streak (five of those losses are against NCAA Tournament Teams), along with posting its first win over George Washington (1-12) since 2010 and third in the all-time series.
Army opened the scoring in the top of the third taking a 1-0 lead on Kasey McCravey's (2-for-4) RBI single with one out that scored April Ortenzo (2-for-3), who led off with a single, stole second and moved to third on a wild pitch.
Bernadette Cardon ripped a single to center field followed by House's sacrifice bunt moving runners to second and third, but Courtney Martin induced the next batter to fly out to center field in holding Army to a single run.
Martin helped her own cause in the bottom half of the third scoring the tying run on Megan Linn's (3-for-3) sacrifice fly to left field after she led off with a double and was sacrificed to third.
Army won the game against reliever Meghan Rico in the top of the fifth after she took over from Martin. With one, Alee Rashenskas reached on a fielding error followed by a popup and a walk to Cardon to set the stage.
With two outs, House came to the plate for the second time in the game following a sac bunt earlier. With runners at first and second, the designated player took the offering and sent it to deep left field for her first collegiate round tripper that lifted Army to a 4-1 lead.
West (1-2), who earned her first start of the season, stranded a runner in scoring position in each of the next two innings, then got out of bases-loaded jam in the bottom of the seventh after being touched with a leadoff homer that cut Army's lead to 4-2.
With two outs and a runner at first base, the Colonials loaded the bases on back-to-back hits. West got out safely when Samantha Dos Santos popped out to third base to end the game and preserve the win.
CThe freshman right-hander allowed eight hits and two earned runs in registering the complete-game victory. She struck out two batters and walked one.
Army collected seven hits off two George Washington batters with Ortenzo and McCravey each stroking a pair of hits. McCravey extended her hitting streak to 13 games as the Black Knights posted a 1-3 mark at the Classic.
"Cracking that egg certainly takes a big weight off our shoulders after two full weekends of play," commented head Army coach Michelle DePolo. "Although it's a relief, we still have a great deal of work to do these next few weeks in practice.
"We knew the beginning of the season would be challenging, particularly with all the changes and new faces in our line-up, so we're still figuring things out.
"We are certainly looking forward to practices the next few days to regroup and continue to find our groove."
Army continues its weekend tournament circuit when it heads to the George Mason Classic next weekend.
NOTES: Four freshman drew starts in today's lineup in Alee Rashenskas, 2B, Marah House, DP, Karena Gonzalez, LF and Kristen West, P ... 3B Kasey McCravey leads Army in hits (14), doubles (4), RBI (5), total bases (21), slugging percentage (.778). on-base percentage (.536) and batting (.519) ... she has not committed an error in 40 chances and is tied for the team lead in runs (4) with Rashenskas ... April Ortenzo is batting .231 among the regulars with Amanda Nguyen hitting .222 ... in the circle, West lowered her ERA to 2.93.