In its third Big East series of the season, the Georgetown softball team (7-26, 1-7 Big East) lost three games to Creighton (22-12, 6-1 Big East) in Omaha, Neb., on Saturday and Sunday. Senior pitcher/second baseman Samantha Giovanniello pitched two complete games in the series, and freshman shortstop Olivia Russ hit the first home run of her college career in the final game of the series.
“We need to keep competing,” Head Coach Pat Conlan wrote in an email to The Hoya. “I felt like we didn’t play our best softball this weekend, and the results showed. We will get back at it at Tuesday’s practice and keep working to get a little bit better each time we step out in the field. The Big East tournament is still in reach, and that is our ultimate goal.”
On Saturday, the Hoyas and Bluejays played a doubleheader, and the Bluejays prevailed in both games by scores of 5-4 and 15-2. In the first game, Giovanniello kept Georgetown in the game by pitching a complete game, striking out six batters in six innings. At the plate, Giovanniello drove in sophomore left fielder Theresa Kane with a double in the third inning. Freshman designated hitter Sarah Bennett had two hits and drove in three runs in the game.
“Sarah has been clutch for us all season, and she continues to have quality at bats with runners in scoring position,” Conlan wrote. “She has been a consistent and reliable part of our offense all season.”
In the second game of the day, Bennett hit a run-scoring double in the first inning to give her team a 1-0 lead. Senior third baseman Taylor Henry added a sacrifice fly in the second inning to make the score 2-0, but the lead was short-lived.
Creighton scored nine runs in the second inning and added six more in the third inning, effectively putting the game out of reach. The Bluejays had 13 hits and six walks in the game, and the Hoyas committed three errors on defense, compounding the damage.
The two teams played the final game of the three-game series Sunday. Giovanniello pitched another complete game, striking out seven batters in six innings, but the Hoyas could only generate five hits and two runs on offense.Georgetown’s highlight on offense was Russ’s home run in the third inning.
“It was exciting,” Russ said. “My teammates communicated to me what the pitcher was throwing, and I was just looking for a good pitch to hit and found that pitch and hit the home run.”
In the sixth inning, Giovanniello doubled down the left field line with two outs before Bennett drove her in with a single. Giovanniello has continued to play a significant role for Georgetown both offensively and in the circle. On offense, she leads the Hoyas in batting average, hits, doubles, home runs and runs batted in while batting in the third spot in the order.
In the circle, Giovanniello has appeared in 25 of Georgetown’s 33 games, starting 22 of them, and leads Georgetown in wins, earned run average and strikeouts.
“[Giovanniello] has worked tremendously hard on the mound for us and has helped us solidify a pitching staff when other pitchers went down with injuries,” Conlan wrote. “She has been a leader offensively, excellent on defense and has been a workhorse on the mound for us. I have so much respect for what she has sacrificed for her team [in] her senior year.”
Kane, Georgetown’s leadoff hitter, had four hits and three stolen bases in the three-game series. Her stolen bases added to her team-leading total of 16 steals this season.
“She gets the job done,” Russ said of Kane. “When she gets on, we all come up behind her and know we can get the job done too. She always has great at bats, always sees a lot of pitches. She’s very selective up there at the plate, and I think she does a great job hitting leadoff.”
Moving forward, Georgetown will play a non-conference home game against Towson (26-10, 4-4 Colonial Athletic Association) Wednesday before playing a three-game weekend series at home against Seton Hall (19-21, 2-5 Big East) on Saturday and Sunday. The Hoyas are looking to improve their focus as conference play continues.
“I think just maintaining focus and not taking any pitches off, you know, playing inning by inning, pitch by pitch,” Russ said regarding what the team will work on moving forward. “I think that will help us in the future.”
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