Brookville, N.Y. – Sophomore Abbey Fortin launched a two-run home run to cap off a four-run fifth inning to help the No. 1 seed LIU Post softball team come from behind and knock off No. 4 seed University of Bridgeport in the opening round of the East Coast Conference Championship May 2 at the LIU Post Softball Complex.
The Pioneers advance to the winners' bracket of the championship with the victory and will face No. 2 seed Mercy College on Friday. With the loss, Bridgeport drops into an elimination contest against No. 3 seed Molloy College.
The ever-dangerous top of the lineup for the Pioneers combined for four hits and all four runs batted in. Fortin led the way with two RBIs, while junior Julia Seader tacked on two hits. Sophomore Katie Humhej allowed eight hits in the complete-game victory, striking out six batters along the way.
Both squads stranded two runners on base during the first two innings before the Purple Knights drove home two runs with two outs in the top of the third to take an early 2-0 advantage. After quiet at bats in the fourth and fifth innings, the Green and Gold rallied for all the offense it needed in the fifth.
Senior Gianna Gatto singled with one out to kick start the rally and moved up to second base on a sacrifice bunt. Seader ripped a triple down to the opposite field to put LIU Post on the board and scored when freshman Patricia Dun doubled to right-center field in the following at-bat to level the scoring. Fortin wasted no time giving the Pioneers the lead as the sent the first pitch she saw over the fence in left field to give LIU Post a 4-2 lead.
Bridgeport threatened in the top of the sixth, scoring one run and loading the bases with two outs, but Humhej forced Allison Luzzi to pop out to end the threat and keep the lead intact. Humhej allowed two runners on in the seventh before forcing a ground ball back to herself to end the game, giving the Pioneers a 4-3 victory.
The Pioneers return to action on day two of the tournament Friday, May 4 when they host Mercy at 10:00 a.m. at the LIU Post Softball Complex.
Provided by the LIU Post Sports Information Department.