University of Rochester

Rochester Review
May–June 2014
Vol. 76, No. 5

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MILESTONE MOMENT Historic No-Hitters Two freshman pitchers, two sports, and two no-hitters make for a historic day in Yellowjacket athletics. By Dennis O’Donnell
sports_mainFRESHMAN PHENOMS: David Strandberg ’17 and Eleni Wechsler ’17 each pitched a no-hitter on the same day in April during separate doubleheaders, one in baseball and one in softball. (Photo: Adam Fenster)

One student is majoring in biology, the other in business. They don’t have any classes together. But freshmen Eleni Wechsler and David Strandberg are linked in Rochester athletic history for their roles in a historic accomplishment.

On a mid-April afternoon, both pitched no-hitters—Wechsler in softball and Strandberg in baseball—as Rochester swept doubleheaders from Skidmore College and Bard College.

Wechsler, from Warwick, N.Y., is the third woman to throw a no-hitter in softball for Rochester. Kathy Gagne ’02 threw the inaugural one in 2002 against D’Youville College. Brittany Grage ’16 pitched a no-hitter against RIT in 2013.

Pitching in the second game of a doubleheader against Skidmore, Wechsler blanked the Thoroughbreds with a 12–0 win that ended in five innings by the mercy rule. She walked three and struck out four. Rochester won the opener 11–3.

At the plate, Wechsler hit an RBI double in a four-run third inning that pushed Rochester up 7–0 in the first game. In game two, she singled home a run in a seven-run second inning that put the Yellowjackets ahead 8–0.

Strandberg, from Weehawken, N.J., joins a legacy of no-hitters in baseball, including one thrown by Bill Standera ’71 in 1971 against St. Bonaventure University. Standera won the Louis Alexander Award as a senior and was inducted into the University’s Athletic Hall of Fame in 2007.

With Strandberg on the mound, the Yellowjackets defeated Bard 11–2 in the opener of a two-game stand. Rochester took the nightcap 18–0.

Pitching seven innings of hitless ball, Strandberg allowed two runs in the fifth off three walks and a wild pitch. He ended the day with six walks and four strikeouts, earning his first collegiate victory.

The performances came with suitable awards. Strandberg was named the Liberty League Rookie of the Week. Wechsler was named the Pitcher of the Week by the University Athletic Association, the Liberty League, and the Eastern College Athletic Conference’s Upstate New York region.

Dennis O’Donnell is director of athletic communication for the Department of Athletics and Recreation.