PHILADELPHIA - Senior Stacey Pinno hit a three-run home run in the fourth inning to lead UNCW to a 4-2 victory over Drexel in the opening game of a Colonial Athletic Association doubleheader Saturday at the Drexel Softball Field. The Dragons rallied to win the nightcap by a 3-1 margin.
The Seahawks moved to 8-36 overall and 3-11 in league play with the split while the Dragons saw their record shift to 19-22 and 4-9. The two teams will conclude their three-game series Sunday with a single game starting at 11 a.m.
Pinno's home run highlighted a UNCW attack that finished with eight hits on the afternoon, including five extra-base knocks. Senior Kesley Eddinger and freshman Jordan Critcher notched two hits each while three players - seniors Katie Houmard and Laura Sykes and sophomore Camry Wagner - accounted for the other three Seahawks hits on the afternoon.
Junior Hanna Parrish went 3-for-6 for Drexel while senior Paige Collings recorded two hits in six plate appearances. Junior Amanda Bachmann and sophomore Maddison Timoteo both hit solo home runs for the Dragons.
Game one saw Drexel took a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning as Reading plated Parrish on a run-scoring single up the middle.
Pinno gave the Seahawks the lead in the top of the fourth, taking a 3-0 offering from Drexel senior pitcher Hillary Allen and sending it over the left-field fence for her third home run of the season. Pinno's blast plated sophomore Daniela Torres and senior Ashley Shingleton, who reached base earlier in the inning on a hit by pitch and a walk, respectively.
The Seahawks stretched their lead to 4-2 in the top of the fifth as a two-out error by the Dragons allowed senior Laura Sykes to score from second after Sykes opened the inning with a leadoff double.
Bachmann cut the Dragons deficit in the bottom half of the frame as she hit a solo home run to center field to make it a 4-2 contest.
That would be as close at Drexel would get, as senior Amanda Davenport retired eight of the final nine batters she faced to improve her record to 7-18 on the season. In seven innings of work, Davenport allowed two runs on five hits. She did not issue a walk and finished with one strikeout.
Allen took the loss for the Dragons in game one to slip to 9-12. In seven innings, Allen allowed four runs on four hits and one walk.
In game two, Eddinger put UNCW up 1-0 in the first inning as she hit the first pitch of the game for a solo home run before the Dragons drew even in the bottom half of the frame, using a passed ball to score Parrish from third.
The score would remain tied at 1-all until the bottom of the fourth, when Timoteo hit a solo home run to give Drexel a 2-1 advantage. The Dragons added an insurance run in the fifth on a single and error that allowed DeMirjian to score from first.
UNCW attempted a rally in the top of the seventh, as senior Katie Houmard doubled to left field to open the inning. The Seahawks were unable to take advantage, however, as Taylor retired the next three batters she faced to end the game.
Taylor improved to 10-9 on the season as she allowed just one run on four hits and three walks. She struck out 12. Rowland took the loss for UNCW in game two as she surrendered three runs (two earned) on four hits and two walks. She struck out seven as she surpassed the 100-strikeout plateau for the season.