Bengals sweep Nazareth

Jahvon Graham, Reporter

The Bengals came in with a record of 10-14 (2-6 SUNYAC) as they hosted Nazareth Tuesday in an afternoon double header. They looked to build off their previous victory against New Paltz.

Lexi Haley took the mound looking to set the tone and did just that, dominating game one by shutting out Nazareth and allowing only one hit. The Bengals put up seven runs to beat the Hawks 7-0.

The win was their second-straight victory. Senior second basemen Stephanie Novo went three for three with a double, triple and two RBIs. Haley hit a two-run single in the sixth inning.

“It feels great to pitch like that,” said Haley. “It feels good after having a few hard losses in the conference this past week.”

Haley managed 16 ground ball outs and attributed her drop ball for the pattern in Nazareth’s hitting.

“Dominant pitching takes some pressure off of the offense,” said senior first baseman Sarah Gorski. “It allows the defense to make routine plays.”

Game two was a lower scoring affair, but the Bengals eked out a 3-2 win to sweep the doubleheader. Senior third baseman Jean Stahl made some great defensive plays at the hot corner.

“As soon as the pitcher throws the ball, I say in my head that if the ball comes my way, I’ll be ready,” said Stahl. “I do think I will stop everything that comes my way.”

Stahl also helped out at the plate, going two for three with one RBI.

The sweep pushed the Bengals’ winning streak to three. They now sport a record of 12-14 (2-6 SUNYAC).

During the three-game win streak, they have scored 16 runs and allowed only two.

“Our pitching and defense has really been solid,” said senior first baseman Sarah Gorski.

“Well, we got to play. Sitting for 18 days not playing really takes a toll on you,” said head coach Marie Curran. “Playing really helps, and it was good to see Lexi coming back strong and getting all those ground balls.”

The Bengals confidence should rise if they continue to win.

“Well, I think our confidence level has been increasing since the win on Saturday,” said Stahl. “I think that the momentum has just kept rolling. We ended on top, so I hope that’s how we’ll stay. We really played as a team the last couple of games, and we haven’t done that since Florida. I think that’s because we know we can still beat anyone.”

The Bengals are moving past their up-and-down start to the season. All they can do is look to the future and focus on capitalizing on the games they have coming up.

“We have more than half our conference games left. We just have to be us,” said Curran. “We’re getting our offense back and most of the team has gotten comfortable. We have a high-scoring conference, so we’re going to have to outscore them to win.”

The Bengals have plenty of chances to get back in the playoff race this weekend as they host Fredonia, Potsdam and Plattsburgh April 23rd, 24th and 25th.

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