DePaul Doesn't Waste Any Time in Florida
Kirsten Verdun improved to 5-2 after pitching a three-hit shutout in Friday's 8-0 win over Massachusetts.

Feb. 24, 2012

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CLEARWATER, Fla. - DePaul made quick work of its NFCA Leadoff Classic opener Friday.

The Blue Demons dispatched Atlantic 10 Conference power Massachusetts 8-0 in a game shortened to five innings by the eight-run rule.

UMass has been the Atlantic 10 champion six times in the last seven years.

It was DePaul's first run-rule victory since last May when the Blue Demons defeated Northern Illinois 9-1 at Cacciatore Stadium. They had four run-rule wins last season.

DePaul (7-4) scored once in the first inning, twice in the second and three times in the third. The Blue Demons put away the Minutewomen with two more runs in the top of the fifth.

Massachusetts (3-3) has been receiving votes in both national polls.

Lynsey Ciezki led off the game with a double, stole third and scored on an error. An inning later, Katelyn Braget ripped a double into the gap in right-center, bringing home Staci Bonezek who had singled and stole second. Two wild pitches later, Braget scored to make it 3-0.

Ciezki led off the third with a walk and Samantha Dodd reached on an infield single. With one out, Mary Connolly was hit by a pitch to load the bases.

Megan Coronado coaxed a walk out of UMass ace Sara Plourde and Ciezki crossed the plate. Bonezek's fielder's choice brought home Dodd. Connolly scored on a Braget fielder's choice.

In the meantime, winning pitcher Kirsten Verdun was clamping down on the Minutewomen attack. The sophomore lefty wound up with a three-hitter while striking out six and walking one as she improved to 5-2 on the season.

Brittany Boesel led off the fifth with a single to left and advanced to second on a groundout. Ali Warren reached on an error. Three illegal pitches later, both Blue Demons scored.

That set the stage for a 2:30 p.m. showdown Friday against No. 20/17 Georgia Tech.

NOTES: Freshman shortstop Brittany Boesel recorded the first hit of her collegiate career with a single in the fifth inning... this was DePaul's first run-rule victory since May 4, 2011 when Lenti & Co. beat Northern Illinois 9-1 in Cacciatore Stadium... just five days earlier, the Blue Demons defeated Connecticut 9-1 in five innings at Cacciatore... in 2011, DePaul also had run-rule triumphs over St. John's and Villanova, both by the score of 12-2... Dodd was 2-for-3 against UMass with a run scored and Ciezki was 1-for-3 with two runs... Braget was 1-for-3 with two RBIs and one run... Bonezek was 1-for-2 with an RBI and a run... Coronado was 1-for-2 with an RBI and Boesel was 1-for-1 with a run... Warren and Connolly each scored a run.



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