Alexis Kaiser, Hannah Dossett lift otherwise quiet offense to 3-0 win over Cornell

first_img Published on May 1, 2019 at 7:39 pm Contact Adam: [email protected] | @_adamhillman Everyone at Skytop Softball Stadium knew Alexis Kaiser’s first inning hit was a home run. Except Kaiser. The freshman cracked the third pitch she saw over the scoreboard and the Cornell team bus, but Kaiser sprinted out of the batter’s box anyway, acting as if it was just a base hit. As she came back into home plate, her teammates mocked her, asking her how she didn’t know that “the farthest home run” Hannah Dossett had ever seen was gone.“Oh my gosh. I was mesmerized,” sophomore Miranda Hearn said. “That ball was so far gone.”After Kaiser’s seventh home run on the season, the Orange didn’t score until Dossett’s RBI double in the sixth inning. Kaiser’s bomb was one of only four hits and three runs for Syracuse (21-28, 8-13 Atlantic Coast) in a 3-0 win against Cornell (10-33, 5-13 Ivy League). Facing Cornell pitcher Katie Lew, who had a 8.61 ERA entering the game, SU saw hittable pitches but either fouled them off or smacked line drives straight into an outfielder’s glove. The putrid Syracuse offense was saved by Miranda Hearn’s eight-strikeout shutout. SU must hit better in order to compete with No. 5 Florida State, the reigning national champions who head to Skytop Softball Stadium this weekend, head coach Shannon Doepking said.AdvertisementThis is placeholder text“I’m happy with the win, but there’s a lot to learn with a showing like that,” Doepking said. “When you get fast pitches, you have to hit them on the field. We can’t consistently foul those pitches off and then get into pitches we can’t really handle.”In the two at-bats before Kaiser’s home run, SU was turning Cornell fastballs into hard-hit shots. Both sophomore Gabby Teran and senior Alicia Hansen slapped fastballs to the outfield, but they landed in the gloves of Cornell fielders. Yet, SU couldn’t continue that in the next four innings. Dossett particularly was befuddled by Lew’s odd delivery. She said Lew had a quick throwing motion, but her actual pitches weren’t that fast. When she saw Lew at the top of the second inning, she swung too early on the first pitch and tapped a grounder to second off the butt of her bat.“I think that made me have to speed up,” Dossett said. “Come the third at bat, I just let it get deep. It was a lot easier to hit.”On her third at bat, Dossett crushed a fastball to deep right-center field, bringing home junior Toni Martin and pushing the lead to two runs. But she and Kaiser were perhaps the only ones who could figure out Lew’s slower pitch speed. They accounted for two of the Orange’s hits and two of the three runs. Kaiser doesn’t believe that Lew did anything special. Instead, it was that the Orange just couldn’t figure how to put the ball in play. And then when they did get contact, the ball flew toward a fielder. “I think we beat ourselves more. We just weren’t attacking the pitches that she left there,” Kaiser said. “I think we should’ve had more hits than we did.”The Orange are already pushing this game out of their mind as they’ll host the reigning national champion and ACC-leading Seminoles this weekend, Doepking and Kaiser said after the win.The Seminoles sport four pitchers with an ERA under 2.39, all who tend to throw sinking curveballs, Dossett said. So, SU has spent time practicing with a machine to replicate FSU pitchers. It works with different spin, speed, and location to replicate FSU pitchers Meghan King, Makinzy Herzog, and Kathryn Sandercock. But, Doepking knows that no practice will be enough. She knows that Syracuse has to minimize fielding errors, something that plagued the Orange in a sweep against Georgia Tech. She knows SU needs to turn the non-curves it sees into hits. Especially, she knows that it can’t put up a showing like today if SU has any chance of coming away with one win.“When you play a team like Florida State, it becomes such a big moment because it says Florida State across their chests and they just won a national championship,” Doepking said. “We have to do the little things right.” Commentscenter_img Facebook Twitter Google+last_img

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