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Softball ends season, DiMeo earns All-CAA Honors | The Triangle

Softball ends season, DiMeo earns All-CAA Honors

The Drexel University women’s softball team completed their season with a final series against James Madison University May 4 and 5. (Photograph courtesy of Drexel Athletics)

The Drexel University women’s softball team finished their season with a series against James Madison University May 4 and 5. Overall, they went 21-29-2 on the season, which beats their record from 2017, and 3-18 in the Colonial Athletic Association conference.

James Madison came into the game leading in the CAA standings having already secured a spot in the championships. The two teams competed in a double header May 4, and James Madison won both games.

Although Drexel did not qualify for the CAA championships, they were still able to hold James Madison to only one run in the first five innings of play of the first game. In the sixth inning, James Madison’s Ashley Samuels doubled to center field driving in two of her teammates Madison Naujokas and Jessica Mrozek. This increased their lead to 3-0.

When the Dragons stepped up to the plate in the bottom of the sixth, sophomore Linda Rush ran to second base off of an error by JMU. This pushed sophomore Taylor Kent to third base before she quickly turned and ran home to score. The first game ended in a loss 3-1.

The second game began shortly after, but JMU pitcher Payton Buresch held the Dragons scoreless for the entire game only allowing one hit from Kent. JMU came away with another win, but this time more definitive, 11-0.

The teams played their final regular season game May 5. The Dragons had a much stronger start to this game.

In the first inning, Rush hit a double to the left field which drove in Kent for the first run of the game. Freshman Kristi DiMeo doubled to center field allowing Rush to score.

The Dragons were then up 2-0. Freshman Megan Trivelpiece made it to first base with DiMeo at second. Freshman Elena Woulfe singled to left field which drove in DiMeo for another run and advanced Trivelpiece to second base before the inning came to an end.

By the fourth inning, JMU had tied the score 3-3. They scored one run in the fifth, while the Dragons evened it up again with a run in the sixth. The seventh inning decided the winner of the game as JMU scored twice to win the final game of the series 6-4.

Two Dragons finished the season with more than 10 home runs. DiMeo lead with 16 home runs on the season, and Rush finished with 13. Sophomore Hannah Walker and junior Taylor M. Lee both had seven home runs each.

The CAA conference announced May 8 the All-CAA Softball Honors which included three Dragons. DiMeo was named to the All-CAA First Team and the All-Rookie Team. Rush was named to the All-CAA Second Team while Woulfe also earned a spot to the Rookie Team.

This season, DiMeo broke four Drexel single-season records: doubles, home runs, total bases and RBI. She hit 18 doubles, 16 home runs, got to base 125 times and had 57 RBIs. When the Dragons played Coppin State University April 12 and Lafayette College April 24, DiMeo scored two home runs in each tying the 2017 season single-game home run record set by Rush last year.

Rush made her mark this season by recording her 100th hit in a game against La Salle University April 18. Early in the season, when the Dragons played Bethune-Cookman University at the Stetson Tournament in DeLand, Florida, Rush hit the game-winning grand slam to lead the Dragons to a 9-8 victory. Currently, Rush holds single-season program records for batting average and slugging percentage 0.414 and 0.850, respectively. She had a total of 45 runs this season, breaking the record for most in a season.

The softball team will only be losing one senior, Katie Haley, from the roster. Since 2016, the team has improved their record percentage each year and will be looking to continue the upward trend in wins for the 2019 season.