SALISBURY, Md. – The No. 4 Salisbury University softball team held off Stevenson University on Sunday afternoon at the SU Softball Field to earn two close contests against the Mustangs. The Sea Gulls earned the pair of victories with scores of 3-0 and 3-2.
Salisbury (30-2) would score the only runs of game one in the bottom of the third inning. Senior Sarah Alpaugh led off the inning with a triple to center field, her second of the season. Classmate Hannah Mills reached first on a fielder's choice as the Mustangs held Alpaugh at third. With runners on the corners, senior Lindsay Brown drove a shot through the right side for the 1-0 lead. Freshman Katie Sebbane's hit by pitch filled the bags for the Gulls as senior Lindsay McCabe entered the box. McCabe and senior Carly Read hit back-to-back singles that brought in one run each for the 3-0 advantage.
The three runs scored by the maroon and gold would be enough on the offensive end as sophomore Rachel Johnson dominated in the circle. Johnson allowed just one hit in the contest, along with one walk, and struck out 17 Mustang batters to match her career-high for the second time in as many days.
In game two, Stevenson (13-15) came on strong in the sixth and seventh innings after the Sea Gulls had established a 3-0 edge.
Salisbury took a quick first-inning lead with senior Michelle Gravdahl's sacrifice fly to right field sending Alpaugh home after reaching second on a double and advancing to third off Molly Hoyt's wild pitch.
Gravdahl would earn another RBI in the bottom of the third before a single from Read gave SU its 3-0 lead over Stevenson in the bottom of the fourth.
Junior pitcher Kathryn Larson held off the Mustangs until the sixth inning when Hoyt helped her cause with a single up the middle, plating Tiffany Kahl to make it 3-1.
Stevenson would strike once again in the top of the seventh. After the Mustangs put runners on first and second with no outs, Larson was relieved by Johnson. Larson had one walk while fanning six Mustangs and scattering eight hits.
SU collected the first out of the inning off Stephanie Ayres' sacrifice bunt that moved the runners up before Alpaugh caught Kahl's sacrifice fly for the second. With the score at 3-2 and the tying run at third, Johnson caught Kaitlyn Seger swinging for the save, her second of the season.
Alpaugh led the Sea Gulls for the day going 4-for-6 with a double, triple and two runs scored. The Eldersburg, Md., native led Salisbury for the week hitting .529, going 9-for-17 with one double, two triples, three runs scored and four RBIs.
Salisbury returns to action on Thursday, April 18 when it hosts Gettysburg College in a non-conference doubleheader. First pitch is slated for 3 p.m.