Dominant pitching carries softball to doubleheader sweep over Staten Island


Photo courtesy of Charger Bulletin/Charlotte Bassett.

New Haven’s Ashley Veillette at first base, West Haven, April 5, 2023.

Pitching is instrumental in the success of any team, especially in the middle of the season when quality innings are most needed. Giving your team as many chances as possible to get off the field and limit the number of runs allows for optimal possibilities to play with a lead.

Two complete games led the way for the University of New Haven softball team as they swept a doubleheader against the College of Staten Island on Wednesday afternoon. Allowing just four runs between the two games, the Chargers were able to take advantage of mistakes and add to their leads as the pitching kept Staten Island’s bats quiet.

Freshman right-handed pitcher Skylar Griffin got the nod in game one, coming off a dominant performance against Saint Michael’s College in which she held a no-hitter through five innings. She followed that game with another great outing, going the distance and allowing five hits and two earned runs along the way for her third win of the season.

Staten Island struck first in the top of the first inning on a sacrifice fly from designated hitter Amelia Funston, bringing center fielder Mariah Carcano around to score after reaching on an error to lead off the game.

New Haven’s offense found their stride in the bottom of the third as third baseman Ashley Veisz was hit by a pitch to lead off the inning. Shortstop Maeve Lougheed followed with a line drive single up the middle and after a fielder’s choice off the bat of left fielder Hailey Polisano, center fielder Bella Chenet brought both runners around to score and advanced to third on the throw to give the Chargers a 2-1 lead.

Staten Island answered right back in the top of the fourth to tie the game at two with a single up the middle by right fielder Alyssa Acosta after a one-out double from Funston.

New Haven tacked on two more runs in the fourth as first baseman Ashley Veillette reached on a fielder’s choice which brought catcher Halle Frederick around to score. Later in the inning, pinch runner Sophia Piccirilli got caught in a rundown between first and second base, which allowed right fielder Aaliyah Amidon to score and give New Haven a 4-2 lead.

New Haven broke the game open in the sixth after adding another run in the fifth on a single by designated hitter Selena Aponte, plating four runs to jump out to a seven-run lead.

Veilette opened the frame with a single to left field, followed by a one-out double to right-center field by Lougheed to put two runners in scoring position who both came around to score on a single down the right-field line by Polisano. Chenet followed her up with another double, advancing to third again on the throw and scoring the final run of the inning on a sacrifice fly from second baseman Kylie Thorpe.

Staten Island brought one more run around in the seventh to make it a six-run game, but Griffin shut the door to seal the 9-3 win in the first game of the doubleheader for the Chargers.

New Haven got another brilliant pitching performance in game two from right-hander Mia Iodice, who was in command all game, finishing with just two hits allowed, no earned runs and seven strikeouts.

Staten Island’s only run of the game came in the top of the first on a groundout by Funston, bringing Carcano around to score after a walk to lead off the game. Iodice worked around the error to keep the damage to a minimum, striking out the next two batters to escape the jam.

New Haven’s offense was held quiet until the fifth inning when they exploded for six runs which provided all of the offense Iodice would need.

Right fielder Stephanie Smith lined a one-out single to left field for New Haven’s second hit of the game, and after a walk from Polisano, pinch hitter Meg Anderson walked to load the bases. Designated hitter Olivia Roberto and Frederick each drew a walk to give New Haven a 2-1 lead.

Following a pitching change, Lougheed knocked a clutch two-run single up the middle, and Veisz delivered the big blow of the inning with a two-run triple to right-center field to cap off the huge six-run frame.

Iodice finished her dominant performance with a strikeout for her fourth win of the season and finished off the sweep of the doubleheader. The two wins add to New Haven’s strong start to the season in conference play, now sitting at 5-3 in the Northeast-10.

The Chargers will go on the road to Syracuse, N.Y. for their next matchup with Le Moyne College on Friday, April 7. New Haven will look to build on their successful doubleheader as they play two against the Dolphins in a crucial conference matchup. More information can be found at