ROCHESTER, N.Y. -- Alfred beat Messiah 4-1 Friday afternoon in the opening game of the NCAA Division III championship tournament's Rochester Regional.
AU took a 3-0 lead against third-seeded Messiah with three runs in the bottom of the second inning. Junior pitcher Alison Wickwire was hit by a pitch to open the inning. Senior Danielle Mastropierro ran for Wickwire and advanced to second on a sacrifice and moved to third on a double by sophomore catcher Jasmine Picini.
Mastropierro scored when sophomore Nora Passuite reached on a fielder's choice, sending sophomore Mackenzie Miller, who was running for Picini, to third. Junior outfielder Alyson Hampton hit an infield single to load the bases before senior outfielder Rachel Guszick singled to score Miller. Sophomore outfielder Samantha Jauregui then hit a sacrifice bunt to score Passuite and give the Saxons a 3-0 lead.
The Saxons added an insurance run in the fifth. Freshman third baseman Liz Thompson belted a leadoff double and came around to score on a Wickwire groundout.
Wickwire was outstanding in the pitcher's circle for the Saxons, retiring the first six Messiah batters and holding the Falcons until a fourth-inning leadoff single. She held Messiah scoreless until the seventh, when the Falcons opened the inning with a pair of singles before scoring their lone run on a fielder's choice with one out. Wickwire allowed four hits (all singles) and a pair of walks while striking out four to improve to 14-5.