Galati helps Hofstra to league title with 2-1 defeat of James Madison
HEMPSTEAD, N.Y. -- Hofstra junior second baseman Tori Rocha hit a two-run double in the top of the third inning and the Pride held off a late James Madison rally to win its 10th CAA softball championship title 2-1.
With the win, Hofstra (43-11) earns the league’s automatic bid to the NCAA tournament.
Senior right-hander Olivia Galati earned Most Outstanding Performer honors for the second consecutive year and her third overall after picking up the victory (37-10) and concluding one of the most impressive CAA tournament runs in history. The senior allowed just one run on seven hits in 20 innings of work in three contests. She struck out 22 batters and walked none all week. After throwing the first perfect game in CAA championship history Thursday, Galati struck out four batters, while giving up just one earned run on three hits Friday. She did not allow a walk in her 7.0 innings of work in the circle during the title game.
Joining Galati on the All-Tournament Team was the Prides’ Rocha, freshman designated player Chloe Fitzgerald, and sophomore catcher Erin Trippi. James Madison sophomore designated player Sarah Mooney, freshman pitcher Jailyn Ford and sophomore center fielder Morgan Heath were also named to the All-Tournament Team. Delaware senior third baseman Lara Andrews and freshman outfielder Shelby Jones and Towson senior pitcher Katie Lingmai and freshman outfielder Olivia Yarbrough were also honored on this year’s CAA All-Tournament squad.
Ford took the loss for the Dukes falling to 23-5 on the season. She gave up two runs on five hits in a complete-game effort. The left-hander struck out three, giving her 1999 on the season and walked one. James Madison was led by Hayes, who went 1-for-2 on the day with a double and a run scored.
Hofstra took the lead in the top of the third, stringing together three consecutive two-out base runners. Galati started the rally by working a walk and moved to second on a single to right field by Fitzgerald. Rocha, who led the Pride going 1-for-3 on the day with two RBI, capped the inning by lasing a double down the right field line scoring both runners for the early 2-0 lead.
In the bottom of the sixth, James Madison freshman second baseman Hannah Hayes led off with a double to start the inning for the second hit of the game for the Dukes. A sacrifice bunt from Heath moved Hayes to third and Caitlin Sandy followed with a sacrifice fly to shallow center field and Hofstra’s Trippi appeared to tag Hayes at the plate, but the umpire ruled obstruction and the run was allowed to stand cutting the Prides’ lead in half.