Connecticut took on Boston University in a one-and-done matchup in Boston yesterday, losing a close game by a score of 1-0. UConn’s offense came into Wednesday on fire, outscoring opponents 62-36 in their last 10 games, but the Terriers’ pitching seemed to know how to cool them off.
The Terriers started Allison Boaz who pitched a gem. She went six innings in the game, picking up four strikeouts in the process. UConn was only able to get seven runners on base against her, four hits and three walks. With her efforts, Boaz collected her 11th win of the season. Pitcher Kasey Ricard came into the game in the seventh inning to shut the door, earning her second save of the season and striking out two.
Hope Jenkins started the game for UConn. She would end up finishing the game with a solid performance, striking out seven in six innings pitched. The lone home run was part of the three hits she allowed, but that run became the deciding factor for the game. This was just her second loss so far, which goes along with her seven wins.
This was the first time since March 4 that the Huskies were shutout. The last one came against Liberty University, who is currently 18-13.
Haley Coupal secured the first hit for the Huskies with a single up the middle during the top of the third. Centerfielder Aziah James came up a couple of batters later and grounded into a fielder’s choice to get on base. James stole second, collecting her stolen base number 20 for 2023. She already surpassed her previous career high of 18 from the 2021 season in 27 games.
UConn’s next hit wouldn’t come until the fifth inning where first baseman Taylor Zatyk singled to left, just to be doubled up two batters later in a lineup by Makenzie Mason.
Right fielder Lexi Hastings, pinch hitter Rosie Garcia and third baseman Haley Coupal accounted for the final three hits for Connecticut, but just weren’t able to push the tying run across.
The Terriers struggled on offense as well. Just like UConn, Boston University’s offense had been a legit threat coming into the game. In their 22 games played prior, they had five double-digit run games and multiple games where they scored eight or nine runs. What might have thrown the team off was their time off between games. Their last three games were all canceled, on top of that, this game was pushed back a day meaning Boston University hadn’t played a game in an entire week.
In the first three innings of the game, Boston University was only able to put on one base runner which came from a first inning walk to third baseman Caitlyn Coker. Shortstop Kayla Roncin homered to left center field with the bases empty to drive in the Terrier’s first and only run of the game. Not only did it drive in the first run, but it was also the team’s first hit of the afternoon. Roncin and Coker would hit singles later in the game to bring the Terrier’s hitting total up to three, but that’s all the team was able to manage.
Neither of the offenses were able to get it going, but that can be attributed to good pitching. For both teams, each team arguably played their hardest opponent of the year. As for UConn, the next stretch of the season comes against easier opponents like UMass, Fairfield University and St. John’s, but they need to get through Villanova first.
Boston University will face Holy Cross this weekend in the Turnpike Trophy Game. This includes a double header on Saturday and another matchup on Sunday. The Terriers have dominated the all-time meetings between the two teams, picking up 46 wins and just eight losses against Holy Cross. Saturday’s double header can be streamed on ESPN+.
UConn will turn around and play against Villanova in Pennsylvania this weekend. Villanova (18-13) comes in on a 10-game winning streak with wins against Big East opponents Georgetown and Creighton within that span. Similar to Boston University and Holy Cross, one of these two teams has dominated the other in the past — in this case it’s UConn. Connecticut is 45-14 all-time against Villanova, but the Wildcats took the win in their last meeting. There are games on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. These games can be streamed on FloSoftball.