Pirates Defeat Wildcats to Claim Third BIG EAST Softball Championship in School HistoryDate: May 14, 2023
By: Victor Gonzalez
Seton Hall Athletics
The Seton Hall Pirates are partying like 2005! The Pirates softball team defeated the Villanova Wildcats 6-1 in Storrs, Conn. to secure their first BIG EAST Tournament Championship and 2023 NCAA Tournament bid since 2005.
The Pirates entered this game undefeated in the tournament, defeating DePaul in their first game, Villanova in the quarterfinals, and UCONN in the semifinals.
The Pirates were in full control of this game from the start offensively and defensively. In the top of the second inning, the Pirates opened up the scoring with an Olivia Gilbert RBI single that scored Lauren Caye to go up 1-0.
Hannah Alexander then hit an RBI sacrifice fly that scored Abby Wingo to go up 2-0. Immediately after, Ashley Colonnetta hit an RBI single that scored Olivia Gilbert to make it a 3-0 ball game. Colonnetta would then proceed to score on a wild pitch putting the Pirates up 4-0 in the second inning.
Abby Wingo continued the scoring in the third inning with an RBI single that scored Miranda Arruda.
Kelsey Carr did a great job of getting out of high leverage situations for the Pirates. In the bottom of the third, she gave up two quick hits, but managed to get three-straight outs to escape the inning.
In the bottom of the fourth with only one out, the Wildcats had the bases loaded, but once again Carr was able to show her clutch gene and get two crucial outs to keep the Pirates in control of the game.
Olivia Gilbert continued to give Kelsey Carr insurance runs with a solo shot in the top of the fifth that put the Pirates up 6-0. It was Gilbert’s second home run of the tournament and her second RBI of the game.
Carr kept the shutout going through five innings, but in the bottom of the sixth inning the Wildcats were able to put a dent in the Pirates lead, scoring one run from a Brooklyn Ostrowski RBI single to make it a 6-1 game.
That would be all the damage the Wildcats would do to Carr as she picked up the final three outs in the bottom of the seventh to secure the Pirates BIG EAST championship.
Carr picked up her 11th win of the season, pitching five-scoreless innings with three strikeouts. The Pirates will now turn their attention towards Selection Sunday of the NCAA Softball Tournament to find out who they will be playing in their regional matchup of the tournament.
After exceeding all expectations throughout the season and losing a heartbreaking season finale game to Butler that could have made them Co-BIG EAST regular season champions, the Pirates are now tournament champions of the BIG EAST and await to continue their amazing season in the NCAA Tournament.
Victor Gonzalez can be reached at email@example.com.