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Softball team drops from ECAC tournament with a pair of losses

Softball team drops from ECAC tournament with a pair of losses

Weehawken, NJ--The Sage Colleges' softball team competed on Saturday in the 2015 Easter College Athletic Conference Metro Division III Championship. Seeded No. 2, the Gators opened action facing Hunter College. Hunter (21-9) tallied an 8-4 win to advance in the winners' bracket. Sage then faced Brooklyn College in the next round, but dropped a 4-2 decision to end their tournament run.

Sage wraps the 2015 season with an 18-17 mark having participated in both the Skyline Conference and ECAC Division III Tournaments for the fourth straight year.

Against Hunter, Sage trailed 8-0 heading into the middle of the sixth inning and cut the lead as they pushed three runs across the plate in the bottom of the sixth as senior catcher Kristen Beikirch (Brockport, NY/Brockport) led off with a single to left field and stole second base. She scored in an RBI single by rookie Alexa Silk (Freehold, NY/Greenvillee). Junior Morgan Dunn (Cohoes, NY/Cohoes) collected an RBI double to drive in Silk and junior pitcher Katie Kovage (Hoosick Falls, NY/Hoosick Falls Central) single to center to drive in Dunn and cut the Hawks' lead.

In the bottom of the seventh, Silk came through with an RBI double to left field, but that was all the Gators could do as Hunter's pitcher senior Sara Beck (Warwick, NY/Warwick) fanned 12 Gators.

Sage's Silk was 2-4 with two RBI's and both Kovage and Dunn each drove in a run in the action. Kovage took the loss after allowing seven earned runs off 12 hits with a pair of strikeouts and dropped to 7-8 on the year.

In the nightcap, Silk had a solo home run in the bottom of the first inning to give Sage a 1-0 lead. The home run was the seventh of the year for the rookie infielder, who ranks No. 2 all-time in single season home runs.

The Gators' lead was erased in the top of the third inning as the Bulldogs got three runs off three hits and Chrissy Heyer had an RBI double with Kayla Hill adding an RBI single before a Gator error allowed a third run to score.

In the fifth inning Heyer reached on a fielders' choice and scored on RBI single by Samantha Rodriguez giving Brooklyn a 4-1 lead.

In the bottom of the sixth inning, Beikirch reached on an error at short and Silk reached on a fielder's choice; as Beikirch advanced to second. Dunn singled up the middle to drive in Beikirch, cutting the lead to two runs, down 4-2. Sage could not cut the lead and was unable to tie the action.

Sophomore pitcher Lindsay Brace (Moriah, NY/Moriah Central) suffered the loss as she finished with nine strikeouts in the action, allowing just two earned runs off six hits. She finishes the season at 8-8 with a team-best 67 strikeouts on the year. Hill (12-9) collected the victory as she gave up just one earned run with four strikeouts.

The day marked the end of three Sage seniors' careers. Beikirch, a two-time CoSIDA Academic All-American, finishes with several Sage career records to her credit. She batted .397 this spring with eight doubles, two triples, and three home runs, while combining for a .578 slugging percentage in 2015. She was also a perfect 12-12 on stolen bases with 34 starts this year. On her career, Beikirch owns several career marks as well. Among them, she is the program's career stolen base leader with 65, while also leading the Gators with her 166 runs scored. She also became the all-time career hit leader and finishes with 221 hits. She has played in a program-best 158 games with 158 starts. She ranks first at Sage in most at-bats (534) as well as total bases (327), while standing No. 2 in doubles (37), No. 4 in triples (9), No. 2 in home runs (17), and No. 3 in RBI's (85). She owns a .414 career batting average as well in her time as a Gator with a .612 career slugging percentage. She was honored in the fall of 2014 as the 2013-2014 ECAC Division III Female Scholar-Athlete of the Year, becoming the first Sage softball player honored with the award. A candidate for the 2015 CoSIDA Academic All-America team this season, she is looking to become a three-time Academic All-American after earning All-District First Team honors this past week.

Outfielders Samantha Woitkoski (Troy, NY/Lansingburgh) and Meghan Roullier (Wynantskill, NY/Columbia) wrap the class of 2015 for the Gators. Woitkoski played in 106 games at Sage, which is No. 18 all-time, having started 96 games in the outfield. She added 79 hits and drove in 32 runs with a .290 career batting average. She batted a personal-best .350 this season for the Gators. Roullier started 55 of 57 games played in her two-years with the program, and had 31 career hits, while standing 12 of 14 in stolen bases.

On the 2015 campaign, the Gators had 65 doubles with 24 home runs, while combining for a .317 batting average in 35 games. The 65 doubles ranks No. 3 among all-time team single-season performances, while the home runs ranks No. 2 all-time for the Sage softball team.