Though it was a historic weekend for the Hoyas, it was one they wish they could have rewritten.Since the program’s inception in 2006, Georgetown softball has participated on the Division I level as an independent. This year, the Hoyas are competing for the first time as a member of the Big East conference.

“I’ve been looking for this opportunity since I took the job four years ago,” Head Coach Pat Conlan said. “We’re very excited; the Big East is one of the best conferences in the country.”

The Hoyas couldn’t translate their excitement to success however, as the Hoyas opened up their Big East schedule by losing two games apiece to both Pittsburgh and South Florida, dropping their overall record to 5-17 (0-4 Big East).

On Friday the Hoyas traveled to Pittsburgh to face the Panthers, their first-ever Big East foe.

Georgetown hung tough with Pitt in both games, but failed to shut the door in the later innings, allowing them to rally for two one-run victories.

In the first game, the Panthers jumped out to an early 3-0 lead behind an RBI single and solo home run from Yvette Bravo. The Hoyas responded in the top of the sixth inning with an RBI single from freshman Mackensey Carter and a two-run double from junior catcher Suria Bahadue, knotting the score at three. Pitt broke the tie with a walk-off single by Niki Cognigni in the bottom of the seventh, giving the Panthers a 4-3 victory.

Junior shortstop Samantha Peters led the Hoya offense with three hits and a run scored. Junior Jennifer Connell was the losing pitcher, surrendering four runs on five hits over six innings.

The second half of the double-header unfolded in an eerily similar fashion to the first, this time resulting in a 2-1 extra inning loss. Pittsburgh again jumped out to an early lead, scoring on an error to take a 1-0 advantage in the third.

Sophomore Kristi Preuss then led off the fourth inning with a double to center field, before Carter helped herself out by driving in Preuss to tie up the score at one apiece. The game remained tied until the bottom of the eighth inning, when pinch-runner Sara Falotico scored the deciding run on an errant throw to give the Panthers the final 2-1 advantage.

The Hoyas were unable to capitalize on Carter’s excellent performance on the mound. In arguably the best performance of her young career, Carter allowed no earned runs in 7.1 innings pitched, giving up just four hits. Carter also led the Hoyas offensively, going 2-3 with an RBI.

Georgetown then traveled to Tampa on Sunday to face South Florida, who defeated the Hoyas handily in both games of their double-header. In the first contest Connell took the loss, allowing six runs (five earned) on eight hits over 6.0 innings in a 6-1 defeat. Carter and McKinley Cooper each contributed two hits apiece. In the second game, Carter took the defeat in a 4-1 loss, allowing four runs (two earned) over 6.0 innings pitched. Cooper again led the offense with a 3-3 performance from the plate.

In other news, Connell pitched the first no-hitter in Georgetown history in a 2-0 victory against Gardner-Webb on Wednesday, March 12. The performance earned Connell recognition on the Big East softball weekly honor roll.

“It’s exciting. Any no-hitter is a tribute to great pitching but also great defense; there were some great plays made behind Jen. . Any time one of us gets recognized by our peers is exciting,” Coach Conlan said.

The Hoyas will continue conference play tomorrow against Seton Hall, Georgetown’s first home game of the season.

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