SOFTBALL FALLS TO FAIRFIELD IN MAAC CHAMPIONSHIP ROUND, 2-0
#6 Fairfield (26-26) - 2
#5 Monmouth (25-31) – 0
NEW ROCHELLE, NY – Led by Destinee Pallotto's no-hitter, sixth-seeded Fairfield defeated the fifth-seeded Monmouth University softball team in the MAAC championship round, 2-0. The Hawks end the 2017 campaign as the conference runner-up for the third consecutive season, as they needed to win two games over the undefeated Stags for the title. Junior pitcher Amanda Riley completed the tournament with five straight complete games and three wins. She pitched 37 total innings, giving up just five earned runs and striking out 37 batters. Riley, along with teammates Jasmine Higa and Justene Reyes, were named to the MAAC All-Tournament Team following the game. Monmouth ends the season with a 25-31 overall record, making the run to the MAAC championship round as the five seed.
NOTES AND QUOTES
“I told our girls, I'm really proud of them. They really came together despite some ups and downs throughout the year. In the tournament they really put it out on the field and represented Monmouth the way we wanted to. Amanda Riley pitched tremendously, and people like Jasmine Higa stepped up and had a great tournament. I couldn't be more proud of our team. We're a resilient team and knew that once we got to the tournament anyone can win. It's time to push forward and get better, which is the goal of this program.” – Monmouth head coach Shannon Salsburg
-Fairfield took the 1-0 lead in the top of the third inning. Riley struck out the Stags batter on a wild pitch, and Sieber scored with the ball at the back stop.
-In the bottom of the fourth inning, senior Justene Reyes walked. She was the only baserunner of the game for Monmouth.
-Neither team registered a hit until the top of the fifth inning. Fairfield led off the inning with a single, and the next batter reached on an error. After Riley struck out the next batter, the Hawks got the force out at third for the second out.
-Fairfield's Kristen Ball gave the Stags a 2-0 lead with an RBI single to right field, scoring Ulzheimer.
-Riley ends the season littered in the Monmouth record books for a single-season. Her 248.1 innings pitched are a single-season program record. Her 17 wins rank tied for sixth. Riley's 46 appearances are a program record, while her 34 starts tie a program record. Her 241 strikeouts broke the program record by 74. She also compiled a 2.59 earned run average with 20 complete games.
-Justene Reyes ends her Monmouth career with a successful senior season. She ends with a .358 batting average and 40 RBI, which both led the team. She also racked up 15 doubles, a slugging percentage of .596, and an on base percentage of .510, which all led the team as well.
-Sophomore Jasmine Higa added three hits in the MAAC Championships, including a home run in the ninth inning to defeat Iona and an RBI double against Marist.
-Junior Morgan Balderas was second on the team with four hits in the MAAC Championships. She added two runs and a double.