Spartans go 1-3 inVa.

The Spartans softball team battled in Virginia last weekend for a series of four games during the Roanoke Valley Softball Bash. The Spartans returned home wining one game and dropping the other three. In Castleton’s first game against the Ferrum College Panthers, the first time playing outside all season, the Spartans fell short 7-1.

A key player for Castleton in the game was Caylee Fleury, a sophomore who went 2-for-2.

The Spartans were the only team in the tournament to score a run against the Panthers thanks to an RBI single by junior Hannah Greene that drove Fleury in during the

third inning.

For the Panthers, a big asset to their game was sophomore Shelbie Hall, who went 3-for-4 out of the leadoff spot with two runs and one RBI.

“We were hitting the ball really far,” Spartan coach John Werner says. “[That] was really good for it being our first time outside all season.”

Taylor Lively, who suffered the loss on seven innings of work, pitched for Castleton, yielding 11 hits and seven runs (six earned).

In game two against the Averett University Cougars, the Spartans suffered their second loss 3-0.

However, sophomores’ Megan Blongy and Mercedes Maltbie, junior Shannon Jipner, and senior Julie Benzenberg all collected hits.

Sophomore pitcher Nicole DeFilippo earned her sixth win for the Cougars, striking out five batters while allowing zero walks.

Sophomore Emily Sweeney took the mound for the Spartans, throwing six innings. She allowed seven hits, three earned runs, one walk and struck out one.

Castleton also suffered another loss to the Peace College Pacers, falling 8-0 in a five-inning game.

Freshman Margy Kerschner went 1-for-1 against the Pacers, giving the Spartans their lone hit of the game.

“Our biggest problem was that we kept hitting the ball to people,” says Werner.

Lively pitched for the Spartans, taking the loss on five innings. She allowed eight hits, eight runs (five earned), three walks and five strikeouts.

In the Spartans final game against the Emory and Henry College Wasps, the Spartans blew past the Wasps, taking a win of 10-2.

Benzenberg and Maltbie went a combined 8-for-8 that day, each launching a home run for the Spartans.

“[Maltbie’s] home run in the first inning really started us off in that game,” says Werner. “We really came together after that.”

Jipner contributed with a two-run double while Sarah Flore went 1-for-4 that game with two runs scored and one RBI.

Sweeny pitched for Castleton, throwing six innings in that game.

“When we go south, we see these teams have been outside for at least a month, and we’re not used to that,” Werner said. “We’re just not used to the height of the ball.”

The Spartans softball team also had four away games this past weekend, blowing past Wentworth, 16-0 and 14-2 on Sunday.

On Saturday, Castleton fell short 3-2 and 10-0 in a double header against Coast Guard.

Junior All-American pitcher Hayley Feindel led Coast Guard to two wins in the circle, allowing just four hits and no earned runs over 13 innings of work and striking out 26 total batters.

Castleton travels to Southern Vermont on March 24 with game one of the twinbill starting at 3 pm and to Skidmore on Sunday, March 27 with first pitch of game one at 1 p.m.

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