A two-run double by Saint Joseph's Caela Abadie in the bottom of the sixth proved to be the decisive blow as the Hawks' softball team opened Atlantic 10 play with a 2-1 victory over Rhode Island on Saturday at the SJU Softball Field.
After five scoreless innings to start conference play, the Rams (11-11, 0-1 A-10) finally broke through in the top of the sixth on a solo home run by Susan Harrison to make it 1-0.
Saint Joseph's (10-11, 1-0 A-10) responded in the bottom half of the inning as Sarah Ostaszewski started the rally with a two-out single. After a hit by Molly Kapala put runners at second and third, Abadie lined a ball off the top of the fence in left center, allowing both SJU base runners to come around and score to make it 2-1.
Ahead by one, senior pitcher Ashley Ventura worked around two Rams base runners in the top of the seventh to close out the game with a strike out. With the win, Ventura moved to 7-8 on the season as she allowed just one earned run on three hits and struck out eight.
At the plate, Abadie went 1-for-2 with two RBI, while Kapala was 2-for-3 with a run scored.
The Hawks and Rams cap their three-game series with a doubleheader on Sunday. Game one is set for a noon start.
Receive all of the latest news and info on SJU softball with Hawk E-News – SIGN UP