ALFRED, N.Y. (May 4, 2019) – A memorable season for the SUNY Delhi softball team was completed on postseason ground Saturday at the ACAA Tournament, hosted by Alfred State. The Broncos' first game of the double-elimination tournament saw them square off against 16th-ranked Thomas More, where the Saints held Delhi hitless in an 8-0 five-inning decision. Head coach Meagan Hillard's team then faced off against the host Pioneers in the elimination game later that afternoon. Following a quiet first several innings, Alfred State combined for six runs in the fifth and sixth innings to hand the Broncos a 6-0 defeat.
In their first season under Coach Hillard, the Broncos surged to an 11-15 record after finishing 0-27 in 2018. After starting the year 1-5, Delhi went on a run by winning eight of its next ten games, including doubleheader sweeps over fellow SUNY school Morrisville State and ACAA foes Pine Manor and Valley Forge. The Broncos' efforts earned them the four seed for the conference tournament.
GAME 1: THOMAS MORE 8, DELHI 0 (FIVE INNINGS)
Squaring off against the 16th-ranked team in NCAA Division III, the Broncos were subject to a combined perfect-game performance from pitchers Alix DeDreu and Kianah Towe. DeDreu posted five strikeouts in four innings of work, while Towe had one K in the remaining frame. Despite the lack of offense, Delhi worked systematically on defense to allow the Saints to score sparingly, backed by five full innings from pitcher Haylee Lefebvre. She finished giving up eight earned runs on eight hits with one strikeout.
Following a three-run first by Thomas More, the Broncos settled in to only give up two runs in the second and one in the third. A two-run, fourth-inning home run by Kenzi Dickerson pushed the game into the mercy effect.
GAME 2: ALFRED STATE 6, DELHI 0
With the help of sharp pitching by Molly Greene and even sharper defense, the Broncos and host Pioneers briskly moved through a scoreless first four-and-a-half innings. But Alfred State broke through by squeaking in two runs in the bottom of the fifth. With runners on second and third and one out, Jamie Parente hit a grounder to second baseman Mackenzie Sparacino. With third-base runner Madison Papaj charging home, Sparacino fired the ball home, but Papaj was called safe at the plate for the first run. Then with two outs and the bases juiced, an attempted force play at third was botched, bringing in the second run. The Pioneers charged on with four more runs in the sixth off six hits.
Though the Broncos got the bats working, getting six hits off pitcher Brittany Fisher, they wound up leaving seven on base, including four in scoring position. Rachael Scoones batted 2-for-3 as Delhi's lone multi-hit provider on the afternoon. Mackenzie Sparacino stole two bases.
Greene pitched 5.1 innings, allowing four earned runs on seven hits with one strikeout. Haylee Lefebvre took over for the last two outs in the sixth, giving up just one earned run on three hits.