The Mount de Sales softball team got off to a rocky start, losing its first three games of the season but has since turned things around after winning six of its last seven decisions.

On Wednesday afternoon, the Sailors defeated visiting John Carroll, 13-3 in six innings, to sweep the Patriots this week. The two IAAM A Conference rivals met on Monday with Mount de Sales earning a 5-3 victory.

Starting pitcher Ashley Lewenski, who picked up the win on Monday, went the distance, allowing three runs and striking out seven batters.

However, she knew it would be a challenge facing the same hitters in back-to-back games.

“You get the number on some of the hitters but they have a better chance of hitting you because they know what you can throw,” Lewenski said.  “I told myself I could do it and it was a great team effort. I had teammates cheering me on and it helped me through the game.”

John Carroll jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the top of the first when battery mates Clare Puopolo and Becca Miles each hit RBI singles. Later, Puopolo added another RBI single in the fifth inning.

The Sailors (6-4 overall, 4-0 league) cut into the lead during the home half of the first. Lewenski reached on an error and after a sacrifice bunt, moved to third base on a passed ball. Later, Ayla Montique was hit by a pitch. 

Montique stole second base and the throw got over the second baseman’s head into center field, allowing Lewenski to score.

Still trailing by a run in the fourth inning, the Sailors’ offensive exploded for six runs. Sarah Hughes and Lori Sena each hit singles. With one out, Lewenski helped her cause with an RBI single to tie the score at 2-2.

Carly Sites drove in a run on a fielder’s choice and right fielder EJ Fioretti followed with a bloop single into right field, plating two more runners. Montique added an RBI double and Ronnie Rittie drove in a run on a ground out, giving Mount de Sales a 7-2 cushion.

“We knew we were down 2-0 and we couldn’t lose this game because we’ve been on a roll and we had to keep it going,” Fioretti said. “We all came together and the bats were going today.”

Lewenski drove in two more runs in the bottom of the fifth, after crushing a pitch to deep center field, scoring Emma Mines and Jenny Slade. An inning later, Jess Jurney hit an RBI single to propel the Sailors to the win.

“We knew that it was going to be a tough game. But I’m very proud of my kids, we hit the ball really well today,” said Sailors coach Pete Waskiewicz.  “[Lewenski] dug deep after falling behind early and she really hit the ball.”

All four of Mount de Sales’ losses this season have come to teams ranked in the VSN Top 20 softball Poll.

The Sailors look to reverse that trend and remain hot while facing arguably the toughest part of its schedule. The Catonsville school will face No. 3 Archbishop Spalding Thursday, play No. 4 Howard on Saturday before squaring off with No. 2 Seton Keough next week.

“[Today’s game] definitely makes me think that we can go up against these better teams because we are a strong team,” Fioretti. “Even if we get down early tomorrow, I know that we can come back and win it.”

Mount de Sales 13, John Carroll 3

JC        200    010    —    3    6    4

MDS     100    624    —   13   11  1

Puopolo and Miles; Lewenski and Sena.

2B: MDS-Montique, Lewenski.

RBI: JC-Puopolo (2), Miles; MDS-Lewenski (3), Fioretti (2), Montique, Rittie, Jurney, Mines, Sites.