BOSTON, Mass. - The Keene State College softball team dropped a pair of 2-1 games, one in eight innings, to UMass Boston in Little East Conference play Saturday afternoon at UMB Softball Field.
- Keene State: 8-14, 3-3 LEC
- UMass Boston: 17-12, 5-5 LEC
How It Happened - Game One
Keene State took the lead with a run in the top of the third, but the Beacons answered with one in the fifth and one in the eighth to take the opener. The pitching dominated, as the teams managed just four hits a side. Two of the Owls' came off the red hot bat of Cassie Woods, who went 2-for-2 with a double. Courtney Votto and Alexis Blanchette also both singled. UMB got a double from Taylor Pawlina and a triple from Alyssa Tulley.
For most of the day, Keene State starter Molly St. Germain and UMass Boston hurler Jess Greenspan traded zeros, with the day's first hit not coming until the top of the third when Woods led off the frame with a double to the left center gap. She advanced on Julie Elwell's grounder to second and scored when St. Germain bounced out to short, putting KSC up 1-0. The Beacons similarly got a leadoff knock in their half of the inning when Cassidy Gaeta singled to left, and she moved to third on a passed ball and sacrifice bunt, but could not score after St. Germain struck out Gigi Braga and Giovanna Bonilla to end the inning. The Owls put a runner on in both the fourth and fifth innings but could not score as it remained a 1-0 game, and UMass Boston tied the game in their half of the fifth thanks to a leadoff triple from Tulley, who later scored on a wild pitch.
Baserunners remained scarce, as the only person who reached in the sixth and seventh innings was Blanchette, who singled with two outs in the top of the seventh for KSC. Tied at 1-1 into extras, Woods started the top of the eighth with a walk before moving to second on a sacrifice bunt from Elwell and third on a passed ball with two outs, but she was left there. The Beacons then ended the game in their half of the inning after engineering a two out rally. Pawlina's double put a runner in scoring position, and she moved to third on Braga's infield single to short. With pinch-hitter Caley Ruggiero at the plate, Braga swiped second and, after the throw got away, pinch-runner Britney Perkett scored the winning run.
St. Germain took the tough luck loss, allowing two runs (one earned) while striking out six in 7 2/3 innings. Greenspan (11-5) also went the distance, allowing one run while whiffing four.
How It Happened - Game Two
The second game was again carried by those in the circle, as single runs in the second and third inning for UMass Boston proved to be enough for the home team to get the sweep. Woods reached twice more, going 1-for-2 with a walk. The Owls also got a single from four others, while Emma Pede drove in the lone run. The Beacons got a double each from Pawlina and Kiera Prusmack, but just one single otherwise.
Keene State put a runner in scoring position in each of the first two innings, including having first and second in the second after singles from Meghan Moran and Olivia McGrath, but could not score, and the Beacons broke though in their half of the second. Kelly Danahy singled up the middle with one out and eventually stole second before scoring on Prusmack's double. UMB doubled their lead (2-0) one inning later with the help of another double, this one from Pawlina to lead off the inning, who scored on a pair of groundouts. After managing just one baserunner, which came on a miscue, between the third and the fifth, the Owls but together a big threat in the sixth against Greenspan. Woods and St. Germain began the inning with base hits to put runners on first and third, one of whom scored on Pede's fielder's choice grounder. Another single, this one from Rousseau, put the tying and go-ahead runs on, but Hayley Catania came in and induced a pair of grounders to keep the Beacons in front 2-1. McGrath, who pitched three hitless innings of relief, set down the home team in the sixth, but KSC went down 1-2-3 in the top of the seventh.
Blanchette (2-5) allowed three hits and two runs in the first three innings, striking out two. Greenspan again picked up the victory to improve to 12-5 after allowing one run and five hits in 5 1/3 innings.
Around the Horn
- The opener of the twinbill marked the fourth extra inning game of the season for KSC. They are 3-1 in such contests.
- St. Germain picked up six more strikeouts in the first game, and now has 308 for her career, good for sixth on the KSC all-time list. Emily Albin '12 is in fifth with 351.
- Woods is now hitting .389 (21-for-54) on the season after notching three more hits in four at bats today.
- Keene State plays their fifth and sixth conference games in the last four days tomorrow, April 14, when they host the University of Southern Maine for a Senior Day doubleheader that begins at 12:00 pm.
- UMass Boston is off until Thursday, April 18 when they entertain Salem State University for two beginning at 3:30 pm.