Contact: Ben Badua
Worcester, Mass. – The Amherst softball team wrapped up its regular season on Tuesday evening by splitting a doubleheader with regional rival Worcester Polytechnic Institute.
Dropping the first game of the twinbill in eight innings, 6-5, Amherst rebounded with a 7-3 victory in the nightcap to improve to 21-11 (6-6 NESCAC) on the year. Suffering its first loss at the new Rooftop Field, WPI moved to 28-12 overall.
GAME 1: WPI 6, AMHERST 5 (8 inn.)
Surrendering an early lead, Amherst dropped the first game of the doubleheader, 6-5. Staking the Jeffs to 3-0 margin in the first, Brianna Cook '16 belted a three-run home run. Putting the home team on the board in the bottom of the second, Lindsay Gurska '17 came around to score on an Ali LaRue '14 fielder's choice. The Engineers trimmed the deficit to one the following frame thanks to a Juliana Fekete '14 lead-off double to left center that was followed by a Lauren DiFelice '14 RBI single to right field.
Getting one back in the top of the fourth, Alyssa Sherwill '15 scored from second on a WPI error. Rallying with two outs in the sixth, Chiana Montesi '15 singled down the right field line. LaRue then doubled to right with Montesi touching home thanks to an Amherst miscue on the play. Beating out a grounder to third moments later, Nicole McDonough '14 allowed LaRue to pull WPI even.
With the Purple & White scoring a go-ahead run in the top of the eighth on a Carolyn Miller '14 two-out RBI single, the Engineers headed into the bottom half of the stanza in need of another rally. With runners on the corners and one out, LaRue stole second. After an intentional walk to McDonough, Katie Bumila '15 brought in the tying run with a groundout. Breaking the deadlock, Kristin Gallagher '17 singled up the middle to lift WPI to the walk-off win.
Kelsey Ayers '15 finished 3-for-3 with a run scored for Amherst, while Kaitlin Silkowitz '14, Donna Leet '15, Cook and Miller accounted for the rest of the Jeffs' seven hits. Jackie Buechler '17 allowed four runs on 10 hits in 6.0 innings, while Caroline Sealander '15 surrendered two runs in 1.2 innings.
Gallagher, Fekete and DiFelice each recorded a pair of base-knocks for WPI, while LaRue was 1-for-3 with two runs scored and two RBI. Clare Doolin '16 tossed 3.2 innings, allowing four runs on five hits, while Caroline Medino '17 gave up just one run on two hits in four and a third innings.
GAME 2: AMHERST 7, WPI 3
Behind a five-run fourth inning, Amherst cruised to a 7-3 win in the nightcap. Pushing across the game's first tally in the top of the second, Alena Marovitz '17 singled up the middle to drive in Cook. Tacking on a run the following frame, Ayers took off for home after a WPI error at short.
With the Engineers cutting the margin in half with a run in the bottom of the third, the Jeffs broke the game open with a five-run fourth. Annie Apffel '17 got things started with a one-out homer to center. Nicolette Miranda '16 then doubled to right center, spelling the end of Medino's start. After a walk to Silkowitz, both batters advanced into scoring position on a passed ball. Ayers doubled down the left field line to bring home Miranda before Leet cleared the bases with a triple. Cook capped off the big inning with an RBI sacrifice fly to right.
Leet finished 2-for-3 with two RBI and a run scored, while Ayers, Marovitz and Apffel also recorded a pair of hits. McDonough led the Engineers with a 3-for-4 showing in game two with LaRue going 1-for-2 with an RBI and run scored.
Sealander gave up one run on five hits in her two innings of work, while Lauren Tuiskula '17 allowed two runs on four hits. Medino surrendered four runs (three earned) on eight hits in 3.1 innings for WPI with Doolin allowing the other three Jeff runs on three hits.