CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA - Fueled by a pair of outstanding pitching performances, Rutgers (8-9) took two games on day one of the Cavalier Classic in Charlottesville, VA, on March 19, by defeating Towson, 1-0, and returning later in the afternoon to post a second-straight shutout in a 4-0 victory over host Virginia.
Senior Brielle Cosentino (Carlstadt, NJ) overcame a lack of run support by scattering three hits over seven innings on the way to her second shutout of the year in the Scarlet Knights’ 1-0 win over Towson (9-10). Cosentino (3-2) struck out a season-high seven batters and walked only two in her best start of the year.
Rutgers, despite belting a season-high five doubles, was only able to get to Towson starter Jessica Wides (1-4) for one run. In the fourth, junior Helen Smith (Tucson, AZ) hit a double to left center and scored on a Maggie Geraldi (Russell, IL) two-out double deep into the gap in left. Geraldi finished the game 1-for-2 with an RBI and senior Brittney Neer (Tallahassee, FL) went 1-for-3 with a double and a pair of stolen bases.
Senior Leah Black (Rocky River, OH), despite not having her best stuff, battled all day long to record her first shutout and sixth complete game of the year in the 4-0 win over the Cavaliers. The Scarlet Knight offense continued to find the gaps and hit four more doubles in game two.
RU wasted no time getting on the board and scored all the runs Black (4-4) would need in the first. Neer led off with an infield single and advanced to second on an errant pick-off throw by pitcher Erin Horn (6-6). Neer then stole second, to raise her team-high total to eight, and scored on a sacrifice bunt off the bat of senior Megan Antonucci (Warrington, PA), who advanced to second on the throw. Antonucci would then score on a double to deep left by junior Stephanie Johannsen (Penn Valley, CA) to make it 2-0.
Rutgers scored a pair of insurance runs in the fifth. Antonucci led off the inning with a double and scored on a double down the left field line by Smith. Smith came home to make it 4-0 on an RBI single up the middle by junior Jenny Card (Miami, FL). Card finished the game 2-for-3 with and RBI, while senior Nicole Casey (Churchville, PA) recorded her first two hits of the year in her 2-for-3 effort.
Tomorrow, Saturday, March 20, the Scarlet Knights will face Youngstown State at 9:00 a.m. and Campbell at 11:00 a.m.