SMITHFIELD, R.I. – Fresh off a come-from-behind victory over Boston University, the Bryant University softball team continues regional play, hosting Connecticut in their home opener on Wednesday at 1 and 3 p.m.
The Bulldogs (5-20) enter the contest off a 4-2 win over BU last Thursday, scoring all four runs in the top of the fifth. Freshman Bianca Mastropietro (Bronx, N.Y.) homered to left center to begin the Bulldogs' scoring effort, before sophomore Jessica Gradillas (Nogales, Ariz.) and junior Rachel Monroe (Southwick, Mass.) hit back-to-back doubles to left center to plate the final three runs.
Mastropietro averages .250, Gradillas .188 and Monroe .149, while the team averages .199. Senior Haylee Haas (Moorpark, Calif.) continues to lead the offense, batting .257, while classmate Taylor Burger (Killingworth, Conn.) improved to .255.
The pitching staff is headed by freshman Gabrielle Ermish (Pottstown, Pa.), who posts a 4.50 ERA and a team-best 23 strikeouts in 51 innings. The rookie also totals three of the team's four wins in the circle.
The Huskies (9-14) enter the Wednesday's contest on a one-game winning streak, most recently defeating Harvard, 5-4, in eight innings. UConn is 2-4 on the road, 3-10 in afternoon games and 2-0 against New England teams with both wins coming against the Crimson.
Carissa Brizzi leads the offense, batting .375 in 17 appearances this season. Valarie Sadowl averages .304, totaling two homeruns and a team-high 12 RBIs. Katie Koshes heads the staff, posting a 1.92 ERA and 3-3 record on the mound. Koshes has stuck out a team-high 19 batters looking, while holding opponents to .195 batting average. Shortstop Kiwi McDaniel has been solid on defense for the Huskies, totaling 19 pullouts, 32 assists and a .836 fielding percentage.
First pitch is scheduled for Wednesday at 1 p.m. at Conaty Park. Fans can also follow along at bryantathletics.com