The second inning proved to be the undoing of Juniata (6-3) in both games.
Lebanon Valley (7-3) posted four runs in the bottom of the second of game one, with Steffani Secola's double to center field starting the inning. After a pair of strikeouts by Juniata starter Alyssa Erb (Hollidaysburg, Pa./Hollidaysburg), Secola scored on a wild pitch. A walk, an RBI single, and an RBI double to center – all with two outs – put the Dutch up 3-0, and a third two-out double plated a fourth run.
LVC scored one run in the first inning, with Meghan Donoghue belting a lead-off triple down the right field line, and scoring on Kerri Datres' infield single.
Juniata's best chance to score came in the opening frame, when Stacy Nagy (Millerton, Pa./Troy) reached on a double to right field. She advanced to third on a ground out to short, but was unable to score. The Eagles also got runners as far as second base in the second, sixth, and seventh innings, but went a combined 0-for-4 with runners in scoring position.
Erb yielded six runs, five earned, in three complete innings of work, allowing six hits and two walks with three strikeouts. Nagy moved into the circle at the start of the fourth inning, and pitched three innings of no-hit ball with one strikeout.
Juniata touched Lebanon Valley starter Val Malizzia for six hits, but Malizzia did not issue any walks and struck out three Eagles in the shutout win.
Nagy finished 2-for-3 at the plate, while Amanda Gerlach (Mesa, Ariz./Marcos de Niza), Caley McCool (Spring Mills, Pa./Penns Valley), Steph Frith (Pottstown, Pa./Pottsgrove) and Allison Gerlach (Mesa, Ariz./Marcos de Niza) collected one single apiece.
Another four-run second inning gave Lebanon Valley an early lead in game two, with the Dutchmen opening the frame with three straight singles. A fly ball to left and a fielder's choice grounder that resulted in a put out at home plate got the Eagles to within one out of escaping the inning unscathed, but a two-run base hit by Chelsea Kehr allowed LebVal to break the scoreless tie. Two more Dutchmen runs scored on a passed ball and an error, before Juniata got out of the inning with a ground out to second base.
Juniata avoided the shut out sweep in the sixth inning as Rachel Nagy (Nazareth, Pa./Nazareth) doubled home Sarah Eckard (Hollidaysburg, Pa./Hollidaysburg), who reached on a lead-off walk to start the inning. Stacy Nagy, who got aboard with a single, was thrown out at home trying to score a second Juniata run on Rachel Nagy's double.
Erb pitched all six innings of game two for Juniata, allowing two earned runs on six hits with one base on balls and a strikeout. Lebanon Valley's Laura Snyder fanned six Eagle batters in the complete game win, allowing just four hits.
Rachel Nagy had a pair of doubles for Juniata in game two, while Stacy Nagy and Kelsey Shutt (Harrisburg, Pa./Central Dauphin) each recorded a single.
Juniata remains on the road for its next doubleheaders, a battle with York College on Thursday, March 18, in York, Pa.