Penn State Berks Defeats Keuka College to Win NEAC Softball Championship

Penn State Berks Defeats Keuka College to Win NEAC Softball Championship

GANSEVOORT, N.Y. – Penn State Berks defeated Keuka College, 8-0, in five innings Sunday afternoon to win its fourth North Eastern Athletic Conference (NEAC) Softball Championship in five years. Despite the loss, NEAC Runner-Up Keuka College finished the season with a record-setting 27 wins on the year.

Game 8: Penn State Abington 10, Cazenovia College 3

Boxscore / Recap (Not available)

A five-run first inning gave Penn State Abington an early advantage in the first game Sunday morning. The Nittany Lions added three more runs in the fourth and two in the sixth to defeat Cazenovia College, 10-3, and stay alive in the double-elimination tournament.

Caitlin Braiser (Levittown, Pa.) went 3-for-4 with two runs and three RBIs for Penn State Abington while rookie Isabel Hoch (Philadelphia, Pa.) had four RBIs on two hits.

Cazenovia’s Hannah Croteau (Central Square, N.Y.) went 3-for-4 and drove in all three runs for the Wildcats.

Emily Wrenn (Hatboro Horsham, Pa.) scattered six hits to earn the complete-game victory for the Nittany Lions. Kelsey Morgan (Central Square, N.Y.) suffered the loss for Cazenovia, allowing eight runs in 3.1 innings of work.

Cazenovia was eliminated from the tournament in the loss, ending the season with a 20-19 overall record.

Game 9: Keuka College 11, Penn State Abington 10 (8 innings)

Boxscore / Recap (Courtesy of Keuka College)

Keuka College appeared to be in control of the game, scoring seven combined runs in the first three innings, but Penn State Abington plated three in the third and three in the fourth to make it interesting. The Nittany Lions tied it up in the six before the teams traded runs in the seventh to force extra innings with the game tied at 8-8.

Penn State Abington scored two runs in the top of the eighth but the Wolves answered back with three runs in the bottom of the inning to win 11-10 and advance to the NEAC Championship game.

NEAC North Player and Rookie of the Year Jessie Hammers (Wayland, N.Y.) went 4-for-5 with a home run, two runs scored and two RBIs for Keuka. Samantha Blum (Niskayuna, N.Y.) and Katelyn Warren (Elmira Heights, N.Y.) each picked up three hits and two RBIs in the win.

Penn State Abington’s Breanna Lineman (Philadelphia, Pa.) was a stand-out at the plate with a pair of doubles to drive in four runs. Samantha Friend (Southampton, Pa.) added three hits and scored three runs for the Nittany Lions.

Janessa Vaadi (Mannsville, N.Y.) got the start for Keuka, lasting 3.1 innings and allowing six runs. Colleen Mooney (Endicott, N.Y.) worked around nine hits in 4.2 innings of relief to earn the win. Emily Wrenn (Hatboro Horsham, N.Y.) suffered the hard-luck loss, allowing just one earned run in 4.1 innings from the bullpen.

The Nittany Lions bowed out of the tournament with the loss, ending the season with an 18-20 overall mark.

Game 10: Penn State Berks 8, Keuka College 0 (5 innings)

Boxscore / Recap (Courtesy of Penn State Berks)

After two scoreless innings, Penn State Berks got on the board in the third on an RBI single by Chelsea Bright (Cape May Court House, N.J.). Jenna Heffner (Bethlehem, Pa.) got on base after an infield single before stealing second and coming around to score on Bright’s hit to give the Nittany Lions a 1-0 lead. Penn State Berks added to the lead in the fourth on back-to-back RBI singles by Heffner and Bright to make it 3-0. The Nittany Lions tacked on five more in the fifth to earn the win and clinch the conference crown.

Bright was named Tournament Most Valuable Player after going 3-for-4 with three RBIs in the championship game. Heffner also had three hits in the win while Heather Rissell (Oley, Pa.) drove in a pair of runs for the Nittany Lions.

Jessie Hammers (Wayland, N.Y.) and Katelyn Warren (Elmira Heights, N.Y.) each had two hits in the loss for the Wolves.

Jessica Rozick (Bensalem, Pa.) was in the circle for the shutout, allowing five hits and two walks while striking out five. Keuka’s Colleen Mooney (Endicott, N.Y.) allowed six runs on 11 hits and struck out two in the defeat.

Keuka finished the season with a 27-11 record, setting a new program record for wins in a season while winning the North Division Regular Season Title.

The win served as retribution for the Nittany Lions, who lost to Keuka in last year’s championship game. Penn State Berks improves to 28-7 on the year and won its fourth conference title in five year. The victory also secures the Nittany Lions an automatic bid to the NCAA Division III Softball Tournament. Tournament selections and regional brackets will be announced Monday at 1 p.m. in a selection show on www.ncaa.com

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The North Eastern Athletic Conference (NEAC) has fourteen NCAA Division III member institutions which include: Bryn Athyn College, Cazenovia College, College of St. Elizabeth, Gallaudet University, Keuka College, Lancaster Bible College, Pennsylvania College of Technology, Pennsylvania State University – Abington, Pennsylvania State University – Berks, SUNY Cobleskill, SUNY Morrisville State College, SUNY Polytechnic Institute, Wells College, and Wilson College.  Associate members are: Cedar Crest College (W Swimming), D’Youville College (M Volleyball), Hilbert College (M&W Lacrosse, M Volleyball), Medaille College (M&W Lacrosse, M Volleyball), Pennsylvania State University – Altoona (M Volleyball), and Rutgers University – Camden (M Golf).  The NEAC has partnered with the North Atlantic Conference in the sports of field hockey and men’s and women’s tennis.  For more information, please visit: www.neacsports.com.