After taking on some of the country's top programs in Myrtle Beach, SC, including 2018 National Runner-up, the Herkimer College Generals, the Dukes softball team were anxious to return home and kick start their conference schedule.
They would host the Bergen County Bulldogs for their home and conference opener on Saturday. The Bulldogs and Cumberland would trade runs in the first two innings before the Dukes broke open the game with a 4-run second inning. From that point on, Cumberland would outscore Bergen 7-1 the rest of the way en route to a 12-4 victory. Siani Gomez would lead the way going 4 for 4 in game 1 with 3 RBIs. Sarah Morgan followed with a 3 for 5 performance with 2 RBIs, Alyse Jackson contributed going 2 for 2 with 1 RBI, and Gianna DeMarco went 2 for 3 with 2 RBIs, 3 Runs scored, and a towering home run to left.
In the circle, Breanna Suppi dominated with 6 innings pitched and 11 strikeouts while scattering 5 hits.
Cumberland's momentum continued into game 2 and the Dukes stormed to an early 6-0 lead after 2 innings. Siani Gomez, Alyse Jackson, and Breanna Suppi led the way offensively for the Dukes. Gomez stayed hot with a 2 for 3 performance with 1 RBI, while Jackson went 3 for 3 with 2 RBIs and 3 Runs scored. Suppi delivered with a 2 for 3 performance with 2 RBIs.
Megan Culley started game 2 and twirled a gem with 5 innings pitched while only giving up 2 hits. The Dukes would win comfortably, 9-1.
On Sunday, the Dukes would face the upstart Monroe College Express. The talented team from the Bronx shocked the Dukes early scoring 4 in their half of the 2nd inning to take a 5-2 lead. However, the Dukes would score 11 runs from that point on led by the 3-4-5 hitters of Cumberland. Alyse Jackson would go 3 for 3 for the Dukes with 2 2B, 2 RBIs, and 3 Runs scored. Alicia Serrano went 2 for 4 with 1 2B and 3 RBIs. Serrano would deliver a key hit in the bottom of the 6th with the score tied at 9. Serrano would deliver a bases-loaded double to score 2 and give the Dukes the lead for good. Breanna Suppi would contribute going 3 for 3 with 2 RBIs.
Alexis Donnelly got the start in game 1 and pitched 6 strong innings while striking out 10 Monroe hitters. Megan Culley came in to close the game for the Dukes tallying 2 strikeouts in the final inning to complete the 13-9 victory.
In game 2, it was all Cumberland as Megan Culley was masterful in the circle for the Dukes. Culley pitched 5 impressive innings, scattering just 3 hits while striking out 6. Offensively, Siani Gomez would once again lead the Dukes, this time going 2 for 3 with a double and 2 RBIs. Gianna DeMarco would go 1 for 1 with 2 RBIs and a run scored while Alyse Jackson did not register an at bat as she would walk twice and score 3 Runs.
Cumberland controlled the game from start to finish en route to a 9-1 victory.
It was an impressive weekend for the Dukes after scoring over 40 runs to bring their record to 7-5, just one shy of their season total a year ago. Cumberland next takes the field Saturday, March 30, as they host Sussex County. First pitch scheduled for 12 PM.