DAYTON, Ohio – Senior Lauren Nacke hit her 41st career home run, lifting the University of Dayton softball team (21-28, 8-9 A-10) to a 3-1 win over the La Salle Explorers (7-38, 1-15 A-10) on Senior Day at UD Softball Stadium. Dayton split the doubleheader after falling 3-1 in game one.
Nacke’s career home run mark is believed to be tied with UMass’ KJ Kelley for second all-time in Atlantic 10 softball history. That number is four behind Jocelyn Dearborn’s 45 that was set during her career at Fordham.
Nacke was 3-for-6 in the doubleheader with a home run and two RBI. Freshman Natalie Mariano was 2-for-6 and junior Leah Sitter was 1-for-3 with an RBI. Junior Kathleen Maloof also had an RBI for UD.
Senior Sarah Wedel (5-6) started game one. Wedel pitched two innings allowing three earned runs against the Explorers. Freshman Kayla English pitched five innings of relief and had six strikeouts in the first game.
English started game two and allowed one earned run, while striking out two. Sophomore Alysha Isaacson (4-10) pitched 2.1 innings of relief and had two strikeouts.
La Salle opened the scoring in game one on Megan Hodgson’s two-run home run in the first inning. Shannon Skomorucha had an RBI single in the third inning putting the Explorers ahead 3-0.
With one out in the bottom half of the inning, La Salle pitcher Alicia Aughton issued three straight walks to load the bases. Maloof chopped a grounder to the short stop allowing sophomore Dana Trotta to cross the plate. The Flyers couldn’t convert on the next at-bat, grounding out to the short stop once again, ending the inning.
The Flyers had a chance to threaten with runners on the corners and one out in the sixth inning, but Aughton worked out of a jam retiring the next two hitters. La Salle held on for the 3-1 win in game one.
The Explorers opened a 1-0 lead on Dayton in game two. Liz Reed doubled home Tristan Musho in the top of the third inning.
Dayton was held scoreless through the first five innings, until Nacke unloaded a two-run blast to put UD ahead 2-1 in the bottom of the sixth inning. Later in the frame, Megan Barrett crossed the plate for the third run of the inning.
Isaacson went three-up and three-down in the top of the seventh to give the Flyers the 3-1 victory.
The Flyers will travel to Charlotte, N.C. to face the Charlotte 49ers in a doubleheader on Saturday, May 5 to close out the regular season.
More on the Seniors:
Barrett began as a pinch runner during her rookie campaign, and earned her way into the starting lineup as her career progressed. In 2011, Barrett set new career-bests in nearly every offensive category including hits, doubles, home runs, RBI and slugging percentage. She is a three-time Atlantic 10 Commissioner’s Honor Roll selection and is a nominee for Capital One / CoSIDA Academic All-District honors this season. She was also UD’s Most Improved Player for the 2011 season. Barrett will graduate this spring with a degree in special education, and she will pursue a teaching career.
Brown ranks high in a number of career records at UD. She is second all-time in RBIs and sacrifices, fifth all-time in home runs and games played and sixth in career hits. She currently ranks fourth in the Atlantic 10 in batting average and leads the Flyers this season in batting average, RBI and doubles. Brandy is a three-time Atlantic 10 Commissioner’s Honor Roll selection and an academic all-district nominee. She will graduate this spring with a degree in sports management and will pursue a career in intercollegiate athletics.
Kutsulis set new career-bests in a number of categories including runs, hits, home runs and stolen bases in 2011. She has also caught 49 stealing in her career. Kutsulis is a four-time A-10 Commissioner’s Honor Roll selection and she is an academic all-district nominee. She will graduate this year as a dual-major in Pre-Dentistry and psychology. Kutsulis plans to attend dentistry school at the Indiana University School of Dentistry.
One of the most decorated Flyers in UD history, Nacke will depart Dayton with a number of single-season and career records. Nacke holds the single-season record for home runs and RBI. She is also the career leader in home runs, RBIs and slugging percentage. Nacke ranks second all-time in games played and walks, third in runs scored, seventh in batting average and hits, and eighth in on-base percentage. The 2011 season was a signature year for Lauren, in which she was named First Team Louisville Slugger/NFCA All-Region, while earned her second career All-Atlantic 10 First Team selection. During that span, she ranked second in the nation in home runs per game and was in the top 25 nationally for total home runs and slugging percentage.
Wedel ranks sixth all-time at UD in wins and innings pitched and eighth in strikeouts. She pitched a one-hit, complete game shutout against Niagara on March 17. In 2011, she was the winning pitcher against Fordham in Coach LaPlaca’s 200th career-win. During her rookie campaign, she became the first freshman ever to pitch a complete game shutout in their first collegiate start for UD. Wedel is a two-time Atlantic 10 Commissioner’s Honor Roll Selection and a nominee for academic all-district. She will graduate from UD with a degree in sports management, and will pursue a career in marketing and sales and also plans to open her own company.