It took the Hofstra softball team nine innings, but the Pride came out victorious 4-1 over North Florida Tuesday in Jacksonville, FL to end its two-game losing skid.
Through 12 games, this marks the fifth time of the season Hofstra (8-4) has gone on to extra innings, winning in four of them.
All tied up at 1-1 in the top of the ninth, Kimberly Wert clobbered a three-run home run to right field for the game-winner, the first hit of her collegiate career.
Wert finished the game 1-2 as a pinch hitter.
Hofstra broke the scoreless tie in the top half of the fifth inning on a RBI walk from Brielle Pietrafesa. North Florida was able to respond in the sixth inning, a RBI bunt single from Kayla McGory.
Sophie Dandola earned the win out of relief for the Pride, jumping to 3-1 in her freshman campaign. Dandola tossed 2.2 shutout innings with two strikeouts, one hit allowed and no walks.
Sarah Cornell was the starter, holding North Florida to one run in 6.1 frames. Cornell struck out five batters. Both pitchers for the Pride have under 2.00 earned run averages this year (Cornell – 1.31 ERA in 59 innings, Dandola – 1.70 ERA in 24.2 innings).
North Florida’s starter Sydney Matzko showed off the stamina, going eight full innings with one run surrendered to alongside three walks and five punch-outs. Morgan Blourne fell to 2-3 after allowing the home run in the ninth.
For the Pride, Kristin Hallam, Megan Patierno, Courtney Scarpato and Jessie Joy all recorded one hit. Nikki Michalowksi and Pietrafesa each walked twice while Brittany Allocca drew one walk and scored once.
Navia Penrod logged half of North Florida’s hits, going 3-4 with the only run scored. Taylor Scott, McGory and Tiffany Lower added a base hit each.
Hofstra returns to Florida for the third time already this season for the Unconquered Invitational at Florida State. The Pride begins with a doubleheader on March 2 against Florida Gulf Coast and Florida State in Tallahassee, FL.