Weekend sports: Panthers split across the states

Sophomore Dante Watson finished the 800m in 13th place with a time 1:51.44 at Saturday’s Stanford Invitational. (Photo courtesy of Dante Watson)

The Panthers’ track and field team found both faltered and found success from coast to coast during the weekend while Pitt baseball, softball and tennis stayed home for conference matchups.

Track and Field

The Pitt track and field team had a jam-packed weekend, with athletes competing in four different competitions across the country.

At the San Francisco State Distance Carnival in Hayward, California, three Panthers broke the school record for the women’s outdoor mile. Seniors Amy Kelly and Rebecca Peters ran the mile with times of 4:57.16 and 5:02.94, respectively — both besting the previous school record of 5:03.

It was junior Miranda Salvo who set the new mark with a time of 4:51.89. Salvo’s time was also good enough to take first in the event. Kelly followed close behind with a second-place finish, and Peters placed fourth.

Just further down the coast at the Stanford Invitational on Saturday, Pitt sophomore Dante Watson competed in the men’s 800-meter as Pitt’s only representative, finishing 13th with a time of 1:51.44.

Qualifying rounds for the Texas Relays were held in Austin, Texas, Thursday night, and the Panthers only qualified for two events that were run Saturday afternoon — the women’s 4×400-meter relay and the men’s 4×200-meter relay.

Pitt’s team of seniors, comprising Desiree Garland, Morgan Harvey, Quadaisha Newkirk and Laila Ismail, won its section in the 4×400 with a time of 3:36.56. The men’s team featured a much younger lineup of first years Ade Jones-Roundtree, Lonzell Feagin and Noah Cook and sophomore Jabari Michael-Khensu. They finished seventh in their section with a time of 1:25.12.

Back on the East Coast in the Raleigh Relays in North Carolina, the Panthers had two athletes competing in field events.

Junior Grant Jones finished third in the men’s javelin with a throw of 62.76 meters. Senior Andin Fosam fared worse in her event, placing 11th in the women’s hammer throw, posting a distance of 51.59 meters.

Baseball

The Pitt baseball team picked up its first series win in the ACC over the weekend, taking two out of three games against Virginia.

The Cavaliers took the first game, 10-7, in a back-and-forth affair that saw five lead changes in the first six innings. Despite the loss, sophomore second baseman Alex Amos starred for the Panthers, batting 3-for-4 and scoring three runs for the Panthers.

The Panthers won Saturday’s contest in dramatic fashion, scoring three runs in the eighth inning to take the 7-5 victory. Redshirt senior center fielder Frank Maldonado was an offensive force for Pitt, going 2-for-3 with a home run and three RBIs.

The series wrapped up in a pitching duel Sunday. Pitt came out on top, winning 4-1 with a stellar pitching performance from redshirt junior Blair Calvo, who went five innings only giving up two hits.

The Panthers will face off against the Youngstown State Penguins in a home-and-home series Tuesday and Wednesday, April 3 and 4.

Redshirt senior center fielder Frank Maldonado went 2-for-3 with a home run during Saturday’s 7-5 victory over Duke. (TPN file photo)

Softball

The Panthers softball team also found success this weekend against ACC competition, taking two out of three games against the Duke Blue Devils at home.

The teams held a double-header Saturday, with the Panthers winning both games. Pitt broke a 1-1 tie with a three-run second inning, giving the team a lead for the rest of the game as it went on to win 6-4.

In the second game of the double-header, the Panthers put on an offensive show with junior shortstop Olivia Gray and junior second baseman Alexis Solak each driving in three runs. The Blue Devils were held scoreless over the last four innings, and the Panthers came away with a dominant 8-4 victory.

Sunday’s contest provided much less offensive firepower, as Pitt fell in the third game of the series, 2-1. Duke first-year pitcher Peyton St. George made quick work of Pitt’s lineup, pitching a complete game and only giving up three hits and one run.

The Panthers head to State College Tuesday, April 3, to face off against Penn State at 6 p.m.

Tennis

The Pitt tennis team’s woeful conference season continued over the weekend, with the team picking up two 5-2 losses against No. 34 Syracuse and No. 50 Boston College, respectively. The Panthers currently sit winless in the ACC with a 0-9 record.

Against Syracuse, Pitt’s only two wins came in singles play as first year Claudia Bartolome defeated Syracuse graduate Anna Shkudun in straight sets, 7-5, 6-0. The Panthers’ other victory came from first year Camila Moreno, who defeated Syracuse sophomore Miranda Ramirez 2-6, 7-6, 2-2, after Ramirez retired in the third set.

Bartolome and senior Callie Frey provided the only two Panther wins in singles matches. Frey beat Boston College sophomore Dasha Possokhova in straight sets, 6-3, 6-4. Bartolome added to her successful weekend taking down Boston College junior Jackie Urbinati in three sets, 6-2, 3-6, 6-2.

The Panthers’ next match will be Friday, April 6, against Clemson at 4 p.m.

 

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