The softball team is back on the diamond today for a doubleheader against Binghamton. While Binghamton’s record is 12-30, the Bearcats have won six of their past 10 games and will be a formidable opponent for the Red.
However, Cornell hasn’t been struggling either. The Red has won six of its last eight and recorded a sweep of Columbia this past weekend in New York, closing out its Ivy League schedule.
Cornell was led once again by sophomore Jenn Meunier on the mound. She pitched a complete game and only allowed one earned run. More impressively, she had nine strikeouts and no walks, demonstrating not only how dominant her stuff has been as of late, but also how excellent her control has been.
On the offensive side of the ball, Meghan Risica has made huge contributions as a freshman. She knocked out another huge homerun in the second Columbia game last Saturday. It was a two-run homerun and was all the offensive production the Red received in its 2-1 victory. The dinger was Risica’s seventh homer on the season, the highest total of any Red player. She also leads Cornell with 45 hits.
Head coach Dick Blood isn’t taking this Binghamton squad lightly.
“They’re very capable,” he said. “They’ve had a bunch of low scoring games this year, and they know how to play.”
Binghamton has plenty of hot players right now too. Rose Barre is hitting .370, over 75 points higher than her next teammate, and has set the tone for the rest of the Bearcats’ batters. Barre also leads Binghamton with 44 hits, an on base percentage of .438 and a slugging percentage of .571.
Katie Hansen has been a workhorse on the mound for Binghamton. She has pitched 152 of the 260 total innings Binghamton has played this year. On most teams, that responsibility is balanced equally amongst three pitchers, but Hansen has taken on more than half the load by herself. She has also recorded 114 of the team’s 164 strikeouts.
Coach Blood thinks the Red will be able to handle a dominant pitcher like Hansen if they see her today.
“We’ve faced a lot of really solid pitching so far this season, which will prepare us for these games with Binghamton,” Blood said.
Although Ivy League play is over, and the Red have officially finished in second place by just one game, the team plans on playing hard all the way through the season’s end. While Coach Blood experimented with the lineup over the weekend, letting freshman pitcher Haley Mirrer play a game in the infield, the lineup will pretty much be back to normal for today’s games.
“This game is about the individual confrontation of a pitcher and a hitter,” Blood said. “That individual competition keeps us from just lying down and quitting.”
After today’s doubleheader, the Red will conclude their season at home on Saturday against Quinnipiac.
Archived article by Lance Polivy
Sun Staff Writer