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Syracuse Softball: Orange Take Care of Business in Big Ten/ ACC Challenge

After a poor start to the season in Las Vegas, the Orange went 3-1 in Atlanta to give them a record of 4-4 on the year.

Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

Last weekend the Syracuse Orange opened up the season in Las Vegas by dropping three of the four games they played. This weekend in Atlanta, they did the opposite by picking up three wins in four tries.

In their first match up of the weekend, the Orange played the Purdue Boilermakers in a game that went into extra innings. Starting on the mound for SU was the junior Sydney O'Hara (0-0). O'Hara did not pitch long, but in her two-and-two-thirds innings of work, she allowed no runs before being taken out for the sophomore AnnaMarie Gatti (1-2) who went on to finish the game.

The Orange struck first, gaining an early 1-0 lead in the second inning when Andrea Bombace doubled to right-center field and brought in Rachel Burkhardt. SU held this lead until the bottom of the fifth inning when Purdue scored three runs to grab a 3-1 lead. The Orange would respond right back though, as Hannah Dossett would score Olivia Martinez and Kelsey Johnson brought in Burkhardt. They tied it up at 3-3 in the top of the sixth inning and managed to get this one to extra innings. In extras though, the Boilermakers proved to be too much as Gatti allowed her fourth earned run of the day. Purdue went on to win the game 4-3, handing Syracuse its fourth loss of the season.

In the next game, the Orange took on the Ohio State Buckeyes in what ended up being a pitcher's duel. On the mound once again for the Orange Gatti (2-2). Both teams were held scoreless for the first three and a half innings, but Dossett changed that when she singled to center field and brought in O'Hara to give the Orange a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the fourth. It would end up being the final score as Gatti went on to pick up her second complete game shutout of the year while recording her second win and helping the Orange improve their record to 2-4.

Playing against Purdue again later on, the scoring started early and often for the Orange. Burkhardt hit a solo home run to give the Orange a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning. The scoring continued through three, and SU gained a 6-0 lead. Purdue would not go away quietly though, as Jocelyn Cater (1-2) gave up a three-run home run in the top of the fourth. The Orange responded right back though in the bottom of the inning when Corrinne Ozanne git a solo home run to put the Orange ahead 7-3. They'd pick up a few more before game's end to complete the rout.

To finish their weekend, SU faced off against Ohio State again. Cater also started this game, posting a shutout through six innings. Both offenses struggled to get going, as it took until the top of the fifth inning for anyone to get into the on the board. Burkhardt was hit by a pitch which allowed for the Orange to get their first run. Later in that same inning Dossett singled to right field bringing in a run to give SU the 2-0 lead. In the sixth inning Bombace hit a home run to give the Orange a 3-0 lead heading into the final inning of play. Gatti would come in to register her first save, getting the Orange were able to get back to .500 at 4-4.

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After an impressive outing in Atlanta, Syracuse heads to Orlando to play in the Citrus Classic for five games next weekend where they hope to add onto their three game winning streak.