HERKIMER – Madison Ihnat homered for the third time in two days and Kayla Young hit three in one game Wednesday as the Herkimer College Generals added two more games to their win column by sweeping a doubleheader against SUNY-Broome.
The Generals (10-0), ranked second in NJCAA Division III, won 11-1 in the first game and 26-0 in the nightcap at their campus field.
The second game saw Young, a freshman from Baldwinsville, became the first known Herkimer College softball player to hit three home runs in a single game – the first in P.J. Anadio’s decade as coach – and drove in 11 runs. The 26 runs scored by Herkimer were a season high, and the shutout was the Generals’ third of the season.
One of Young’s home runs was a grand slam. Caitlyn Zagas added three hits and four RBI in Game 2, Melissa Daigneault had three hits and scored five runs, and Victoria Borowski and Poland High School graduate Thalia Pantoja each had two hits. Alexis Garrison pitched the first three innings of the combined five-inning shutout; Michaela Ponticello got the final six outs.
Daigneault ended the first game with a home run that put the NJCAA’s mercy rule in effect; that also capped a four-RBI game for her. Ihnat had two hits, including her home run, and drove in three runs, and Aubrey Ketcham and Emily Beames each had two hits. Beames also pitched a five-inning complete game for the win.
Next up for the Generals is a four-game weekend series with noon doubleheaders against Cayuga Community College. Herkimer plays at home Saturday and travels to Auburn Sunday.
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Empire 8 honor
ALBANY – Former Little Falls Mountie and Herkimer College General Claire Connolly was among the Empire 8 Conference’s spring tennis honorees
A softball, basketball and field hockey player in high school, Connolly is on her third collegiate sport, having run cross country in the fall of her year at Herkimer and played field hockey during her first year at Russell Sage College. Fall sports at Russell Sage were canceled for 2020 because of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, and Connolly took up tennis when its season was rescheduled.
Connolly compiled a 2-4 record at third singles while also playing second doubles for the Gators. She was selected as the team’s winner of the Empire 8 Sportswoman of the Year Team.
The Sportswoman of the Year Team is part of the league’s emphasis on “competing with honor and integrity” a component of the student-athlete experience.
One player from each of the Empire 8’s seven participating schools was selected for the Sportswoman of the Year team, and the honorees were announced Tuesday along with other postseason tennis awards. Nazareth College freshman Aliya Guzman was the Player and Rookie of the year, Nazareth’s Paul Waida was named Coach of the Year.
Joining Guzman as first-team singles all-stars were teammates Brooke Murphy and Marissa Towers, St. John Fisher Cardinal Valerie Morgans, and Utica College Pioneers Ellen Lyga, Ellen Collie and Morgan Willis. Guzman and Murphy were first-team doubles selections with Utica’s Lyga and Collie, and St. John Fisher’s Mikayla Santulli and Kathryn Strait.
Second and third teams also were announced.
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