CORTLAND, N.Y.– SUNY Geneseo sophomore Claire VanNewkirk had a two-run single in the Knights' five-run fifth inning, helping to lead third-seeded Geneseo to a 9-1 win over fourth-seeded Oneonta, Thursday. The Knights improved their record to 24-15 and will next face number-two seed Plattsburgh at 11 a.m., Friday in the double-elimination SUNYAC Championship.
Geneseo got on the board with an unearned run in the third, with junior Alyssa Presutti reaching base and scoring courtesy of a pair of Oneonta errors. The Knights added another tally in their next at-bat, set up when senior Cat Krok led off the inning with a double to left field. Junior pinch-runner Jacqueline Santilli advanced on a sacrifice bunt by senior Jenna Phillips and scored when VanNewkirk's fly to left field was dropped, giving Geneseo the 2-0 lead.
Moore retired seven straight hitters in the first through third inning, assisted by strong defense. First-year catcher Taylor Fedor gunned down a Red Dragon in the third attempting to steal and in the fourth, Krok caught a popped-up bunt attempt and doubled a runner off first base.
The Knights built what ended up being an insurmountable lead in the fifth. Base hits by three first-years—Fedor, Alyssa Persich and Danni Napoli—loaded the bases and a Krok fielder's choice brought home the third Geneseo run. With two outs and the bases still full, VanNewkirk pulled a single down the right-field line to score two and juniors Abby Dennett and Presutti followed with back-to-back RBI-singles to push the lead to 7-0.
A walk and a double in the top of the sixth plated Oneonta's first run, but Moore limited the Red Dragons to just one score and the Knights finished the game in the bottom of the frame when sophomore Emily Martin hit a walk-off home run to left field with Persich on base to provide the final 9-1 margin.
Moore (11-6), who matched her career high for wins in a season, allowed just three hits, while walking two and striking out four. She is 4-0 against Oneonta the last two seasons, including a 2-0 shutout in last year's SUNYAC Tournament.
The higher-seeded team won each of the tournament's three games in the first day, with #1 Cortland and #2 Plattsburgh taking victories. Geneseo will face the Cardinals on Friday, May 6 at 11 a.m., the teams having split their pair of regular-season games last month. Live Stats and video links are available on geneseoknights.com's Championships Central page.