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Molloy swept out of NCAAs

Molloy starting pitcher #7 Megan Butterworth delivers a

Molloy starting pitcher #7 Megan Butterworth delivers a pitch to the plate. (May 6, 2012) Credit: James Escher

NEW HAVEN -- Even after Saturday's disappointing results, Molloy College softball coach Susan Cassidy-Lyke called this year's team better than her 2010 squad.

That team became the first in Molloy history to reach the NCAA Division II World Series. This year's Lions had two chances to earn another visit to the CWS but dropped both games of a doubleheader and were eliminated by Southern Connecticut State in the super regional at Yale's DeWitt Family Field.

"We just didn't make the plays today," Cassidy-Lyke said. "All we had to do was win one of two games today and if we can't do that, then we don't deserve to go [to the College World Series]."

SCSU, the super regional's top seed, won the first game, 3-2, and pulled away in the second game, 9-2, to earn its first CWS berth.

No. 2 seed Molloy (47-13) needed only one win to clinch the best-of-three series after posting a dramatic 7-3 win Friday in 15 innings. But despite momentum from that victory, the Lions admitted being tired.

"It was draining," Molloy pitcher Megan Butterworth said. "We were all tired. I know I was a little sore and I don't think I really had my best stuff today."

Butterworth took the loss in the second game. Kelly Jansen dropped the opener but both wrapped up sensational seasons combining for 47 victories and a sub-2.00 ERA.

"It's not like they wanted it more," Cassidy-Lyke said. "We wanted it as badly as they did; they just played better. We usually play error-free and we didn't do that at all today."

Senior Jayme Larson pitched all 14 innings for Southern. She also pitched 122/3 innings Friday. In all, Larson threw 422 pitches in the two days.

In the opener Saturday, the Owls got three runs in the second inning, on an RBI double by Julie Muscarella, Brittany Bucko's sacrifice fly and a passed ball.

In the fifth, Molloy parlayed three hits and two walks into two runs. The inning included a controversial play when SCSU shortstop Nicole Buch appeared to be interfered with trying to field a grounder hit by Jeana Frey. The umpires ruled there was no obstruction but Larson got out of the inning with a pair of grounders.

In the second game, SCSU broke open a 2-2 tie with four runs, only one of which was earned, in the fourth inning. The Owls added three more in the sixth inning.

Frey led the Lions with three hits on the day.

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