Seton Hall Softball Season Comes to an End in NCAA TournamentDate: May 23, 2023
By: Michael Bellifemini and Brian Henderson
Seton Hall Athletics
The No. 13 seeded Texas Longhorns defeated the Seton Hall Pirates in five innings, 8-0, as the game was called for the eight-run mercy rule.
The Pirates failed to record a hit in the game, getting held hitless by sophomore Mac Morgan for four innings and by junior Estelle Czech for one inning. Seton Hall’s only baserunner was junior Lela Allen, who drew a walk to lead off the top of the fourth inning.
On the other hand, the Longhorns dominated on offense, tagging senior and Texas native Shelby Smith for eight runs (seven earned runs) over 4.2 innings. The Texas bats did their damage through infield singles and doubles into the outfield as they did not hit a home run during the offensive outpouring.
Freshman Viviana Martinez drove in three of the runs on two doubles in the first and fifth innings, and seven different Longhorns were able to get a hit during the abbreviated contest.
Senior infielder Ashly Colonnetta also committed two errors for Seton Hall but the game was out of reach virtually right from the get go.
The next day, the Pirates tried to keep their season alive against the Texas St Bobcats, who lost to the Texas A&M Aggies in 8 innings by a score of 2-1 that same day.
Facing elimination, the Pirates let the game slip between their fingers as the Texas State Bobcats (35-24-1) would send The Hall back to South Orange.
The Pirates started off much better than against No. 13 Texas. Lela Allen was able to single to left field on the first pitch of the game. Unfortunately, star sophomore Taylor Hill lined out into a double play.
The Pirates had a bit of a two-out rally, with Kelsey Carr walking and Smith singling, but were stranded on base when Abby Wingo grounded out.
Kelsey Carr took the circle for the Pirates and she was as dominant as she had been all year for Seton Hall. Through the first three innings, she faced the minimum nine batters.
Carr was also a great source of offense for the Pirates. Her towering two-run blast to center field scored Hill and gave the Pirates the 2-0 lead.
T3 | . . .— Seton Hall Softball (@SHUSoftball) May 20, 2023
Kelsey Carr blasts her 13th homer of the season and gets up to 50 RBI on the year!
Tune in on @ESPNPlus: https://t.co/27PUjc6VI0#HALLin⚪ pic.twitter.com/pclwnNZEX0
From then until the fifth inning, both offenses went cold. The Pirates were able to get on base, but inopportune lineouts and flyouts stranded runners in the fourth and fifth.
Texas State came alive in the bottom of the fifth, when Ciara Trahan singled into right. A few crucial errors by the Seton Hall outfield caused an outfield single to turn into a two-RBI single.
Trahan scored a run of her own later on thanks to a sacrifice fly by Sara Vanderford. Carr was able to get out of the fifth, but not before significant damage had been done.
With the clock getting close to midnight on the Pirates season, Taylor Hill got on base via an error to bring up Kelsey Carr with two outs in the bottom of the 6th. An untimely lineout to Texas State pitcher Jessica Mullins ended the inning.
In the final inning of the season, Shelby Smith led off and got on base with a shot to center. Abby Wingo, fresh off of breaking the single-season hit record for the Pirates, reached as well to put two runners on with Olivia Gilbert up to bat.
She swung and missed to bring up Hannah Alexander with one out. She got on with an error, bringing up Andrea Perez with the bases loaded.
Perez, with one out and the season on the line, grounded into a fielder’s choice to bring it within one. It came down to the final strike with Colonnetta in a 1-2 count, but she lined out to the shortstop.
Hooks Up Forever #HALLin⚪️ pic.twitter.com/kRceCnno1H— Seton Hall Softball (@SHUSoftball) May 21, 2023
A heartbreaking end to a magical season for the Seton Hall Pirates.
Michael Bellifemini and Brian Henderson can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com.