NEW ROCHELLE, NY - Senior Beth Kann's walkoff home run with one out in the bottom eighth inning propelled the Iona College softball team to a 4-3 victory over Niagara in the second game of a conference doubleheader Sunday afternoon at Rice Oval. Niagara held the Gaels to three hits in the opener and took game one 2-0.
In the opener, Niagara struck for the only run it would need in the first when Katie Gruarin scored on a single by Alexis Wayne. The Purple Eagles would get their second run of the game in the fourth inning on a single by Ambur Farmer.
Freshman Sarah Schutz led the Gaels with two hits in the contest. Niagara's Jennifer Sansano picked up her tenth win of the season in game one, allowing just three hits and one walk while striking out 11. Sophomore Carly Argyle fell to 9-19 in the game, allowing two runs, one earned, on four hits while striking out eight.
In game two, Niagara jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the top of the first inning on a two-run home run by Becky Zill, and added another run in the second on a double to left centerfield by Aileen Hinton.
The Gaels would be able to begin the comeback with a run in the bottom of the third. Freshman Sydney Dimon led off the inning with a ground-rule double to right center. Three batters later, Dimon came around to score on a single by sophomore Brianna Schauer.
In the fourth, Iona would tie the game at three on back-to-back solo home runs by junior Katie Jansson and Argyle.
The game would remain knotted until the bottom of the eighth inning when with one out Kann punched a 3-2 pitch over the center field fence for her eighth home run of the season.
Argyle picked up tenth win of the season in the game, allowing three runs on six hits and five walks in eight innings while striking out five. Sansano (10-10) took the game two loss in relief, surrendering two hits while striking out three in 3.1 innings.
The Gaels now sit in fourth in the MAAC standings with a conference record of 8-6, and next play Thursday at Stony Brook at 2:00 pm.