Row 1 (L-R):Laurissa Riley, Jasmery Polanco, Bridget Hurlman, Chrystine McHugh, Katie Eskin.
Row 2 (L-R): Kristen Merlino, Mary Beth Pomes, Caitlin Carpentier, Melissa Giordano, Pamela de la Llave, Alison Catenacci, Christine Jakobsen.
Row 3 (L-R): Assistant Coach Tom Pardalis, Team Manager Kristen Casamento, Megan Rigos, Lindsey Kinel, Danielle Cibelli, Jessica Green, Annie Castellano, Head Coach MelissaTucci, Assistant Coach Michael Cioppa.
MAAC Championship Recap
The 2006 Marist Softball team had a dream season en route to winning their first ever MAAC Championship. The team also qualified for the NCAA Tournament for the first time in school history. The team defeated Fairfield by a score of 1-0 in a pitcher’s duel. Sophomore sensation Megan Rigos pitched her third-straight complete game to lead second-seeded Marist to a 1-0 victory over fourth-seeded Fairfield for the program's first-ever MAAC Championship win. The Red Foxes scored their lone run in the first inning when senior captain Jasmery Polanco hit an RBI single following a triple by rookie Melissa Giordano.
Rigos allowed just four hits and struck out six in the shutout victory. The Red Foxes made short work of the Stags in the critical seventh inning including a beautiful catch at the right-center field wall by rookie Mary Beth Pomes. Five players earned All-Tournament Team honors including Chrystine McHugh who was named MAAC Player of the Year and the MAAC Tournament Most Valuable Player. The team finished with an overall record of 33-13 which is the highest win total in the softball team’s history. After the season, 2006 MAAC Coach of the Year Melissa Tucci stepped down. She led the Red Foxes for the five previous seasons.
NCAA Tournament Recap
The Red Foxes were paired up against the number two seeded, and soon to be the national champion, Arizona Wildcats in the first round of the 2006 NCAA Tournament. In a frustrating game the team fell 9-0 and would go on to face Auburn in the elimination game of the Tucson Regional. The season ended with a crushing 14-0 defeat to the Tigers.
The Tigers would open up a five run advantage in the third inning. Amy Shaw led off the inning after reaching on an error, and advanced to second on a stolen base. She was punched in on a base hit to center field by the shortstop Ashley Griffin. The Tigers were not done in the frame, however. Auburn would get a hit batter following Griffin's single and then back-to-back doubles from Tatiana Fernandez and Myesha Finney to take a 5-0 lead heading into the bottom of the third.
The Tigers would not stop in the fourth, as they exploded for six runs in the inning to take an 11-0 lead after the top of the fourth. The inning was started by a triple to right field by Walton. Marist could not get anything going against Auburn starter Currie. Currie faced the minimum in the five inning contest and did not allow a base hit. Marist had one base runner as Chrystine McHugh reached on a wild pitch following a strike out. She was later erased on a double play.
The team finished with an overall record of 33-13 which is the highest win total in the softball team’s history. After the season, 2006 MAAC Coach of the Year Melissa Tucci stepped down. She led the Red Foxes in the five previous seasons.