LYNDHURST, N.J. – Junior first baseman Nicole Spiegelberg (Blauvelt, N.Y./Tappan Zee) hit a tying three-run home run and sisters Keelee Davis (Chula Vista, Calif./Eastlake) and Isabel Davis (Chula Vista, Calif./Eastlake) collected three hits apiece to lead Felician University to an 11-5 Game 2 victory over Nyack College and a split of the teams' Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference softball doubleheader on Thursday afternoon at the Lyndhurst Recreation Complex. Nyack had won game 1, 6-1.
Felician remains in control of its ability to reach the CACC playoffs for a fifth consecutive season. Saturday's split, combined with other conference results, kept the Golden Falcons (15-26, 11-11) in a three-way tie for fifth place on the 14-team table. They have four league games left to play and a two-game cushion over ninth-place Bloomfield College. The top eight teams at season's end will qualify for the 2019 CACC Softball Championship tournament, to be contested during the inaugural CACC Championship Festival from May 2-4 in Lakewood, N.J.
Senior catcher Katie Lupinacci (Bordentown, N.J./Bordentown Regional) went 5 for 8 on the day for the Warriors.
Spiegelberg's Game 2 home run was the 29th of her career, matching Ciera Clark (2012-15) for the all-time Felician record. Clark hit her last home run in her 164th game; Spiegelberg has appeared in 133.
The Golden Falcons piled up 15 hits in the contest. Isabel Davis, a redshirt sophomore outfielder, and Keelee Davis, a true sophomore catcher, combined to bat 6 for 7 with two doubles (one each) and six runs batted in.
Nyack (15-26, 12-12) erased an early 2-0 deficit by reaching Felician freshman pitcher Martarina Crumb (Branchville, N.J./Sussex Tech) for five runs on four hits in the top of the third inning. Starting pitcher Alyssa Giampolo (East Windsor, N.J.) delivered the big blow, a tiebreaking three-run double.
But Krystina Lorch (Hemet, Calif./West Valley) and Steph Donah (Clark, N.J./Arthur L. Johnson) started the bottom of the third with singles, and Spiegelberg launched a ball over the center field fence to pull Felician back even. Giampolo, who had earned a complete-game win in the opener, departed the circle after a walk two batters later, and reliever Steph White (Hamilton, N.J.) escaped further damage.
With Crumb holding off the Warrior offense, Felician moved ahead to stay in the fifth. Bella Bradian (Mount Royal, N.J./Kingsway Regional) laced a one-out go-ahead triple and scored on Mia Montoya's (Las Vegas, Nev.) squeeze bunt. Both Davises stroked two-run singles in the sixth as the Golden Falcons pulled away.
Crumb (6-14) gave up eight hits and four walks over seven innings to win her third consecutive start, while White (2-15) was tagged with the loss. Keelee Davis was 3 for 3 with four RBI, and Isabel Davis went 3 for 4 and drove in a pair. Leadoff batter C.J. Apacible (Long Beach, Calif./Lakewood) joined Lorch (three runs) and Donah with two hits each. Nyack's Lupinacci was 3 for 4 with a double.
Giampolo (13-8) successfully navigated her way through the Felician lineup during Game 1, allowing seven hits and one walk. Nyack picked up two unearned runs in the first, and the Golden Falcon offense lay dormant until Montoya's home run leading off the fifth.
Felician missed a chance to tie in the sixth, leaving a runner on third base with one out. The Warriors then put the game away with four runs on four hits off Trinity Garcia (West Covina, Calif./West Covina) (9-10) in the seventh. Erin O'Brien (Cumberland, N.J./Cumberland Regional) led off with a homer, and Arielys Rodriguez (Albany, N.Y.) grounded a two-run single and Lupinacci a run-scoring hit later in the stanza.
Felician put its leadoff batter on in the seventh but never threatened. Spiegelberg garnered two of the hosts' seven hits. Nyack's Morgan Hans (Washington Township, N.J.) was 2 for 2 plus two walks.
Felician travels to 10th place Post University on Apr. 24 for an 11 a.m. CACC doubleheader in Waterbury, Conn.