All season long for the Huskies, it’s been either Marybeth Olson or Meghan O’Neil dominating opposing teams on the mound. Well, on Tuesday afternoon, it was both.
The UConn softball team notched its second shutout in three days with a 7-0 win over the Hofstra Pride on their home field in Hempstead, New York. It was a bit of a homecoming for UConn head coach Laura Valentino, who played on that field for four years when she was a member of Hofstra’s softball team from 2008 to 2011.
Olson, O’Neil and the rest of the Huskies (16-5) spoiled Hofstra’s (3-15) home opener with another convincing win. The Pride only managed seven baserunners in the entire game against the two UConn aces, and none of them crossed home plate.
Olson started the game and pitched the first four innings, letting up three hits and striking out one. Then O’Neil came in to pitch the final three frames and let up two hits while striking out four batters. Olson got credit for the win, keeping her record perfect at 10-0.
On offense, UConn tagged Hofstra’s starter Madison Burns for seven runs on seven hits in just five innings. Burns was also a little wild and walked four UConn players.
The Huskies opened the scoring in the second inning. After Kiwi McDaniel and Olson both drew walks, Carli Cutler brought both of them home with a bloop two-run single to right field to give UConn the early lead.
Samantha Barnett added to the lead with an RBI single in the third inning to make it 3-0. Then, Briana Marcelino broke the game wide open in the fourth with a three-run home run that just cleared the fence in left-center field, making the score 6-0. It was her team-leading fourth home run of the year, and she now leads the team and is second in the conference with 24 RBIs.
Finally, Barnett added a solo home run of her own in the fifth, her second of the season. It was an absolute bomb to straight away right field that put UConn up 7-0, the eventual final score.
SEE YA 👋
— UConn Softball (@UConnSoftball) March 10, 2020
The Huskies made quick work of the Pride, and Valentino notched her first win as a head coach over her alma mater. The two teams will see each other again later this week in the second game of the St. John’s Invitational, set to take place in Queens from Friday to Sunday. UConn is set to face St. John’s, Hofstra, Holy Cross and Hartford in four games this weekend, looking to continue this red hot start to the 2020 season.