ORLANDO, Fla. – The Amherst softball team opened their 2019 campaign with a pair of wins, defeating Susquehanna (4-3) and Worcester State (6-3) on Sunday when they began their 10-game stint in Florida.
With the performance on day one, the Mammoths are 2-0 overall and are back in action on Tuesday (March 12th) when they take on Lake Forest at 3:45 PM and Suffolk at 6:00 PM.
Amherst vs. Susquehanna
Amherst came out swinging in their first match of the season, stealing two quick runs in the first inning to take an early lead. A pair of errors and walks from the Susquehanna side fueled the Mammoths offensive momentum alongside an RBI from Ronnie Falasco '21.
After reaching home in the first inning on an infield error, Kate Kopatic '20 knocked a key double into centerfield, scoring Andrea Sanders '20 to go up 3-0 in the second inning. Susquehanna got on the board in the fourth inning when Kasey Bost reached first and advanced to second on an error, scoring Katie Koch.
The Mammoths were next to score in the top of the sixth when Annie Murphy reached home on a fielder's choice. Down 4-1, Susquehanna refused to quit, scoring twice in the bottom of the sixth to bring the River Hawks to within one. Bost laced a shot to left field to score Koch and Emily Lear, however, the Mammoths were able to hold off the late rally to notch their first victory on the year.
Lorena Ukanwa '19 went the full length, allowing only two hits on the morning and striking out 10 River Hawks to take the win. Alexa Gonzalez receives the loss and moves to 1-1 after allowing three hits, three walks, and two earned runs.
Amherst vs. Worcester State
Worcester State scored a pair of runs in the top of the first inning, thanks to a two-run double from senior Katie Polselli. Senior Kristen Huston and junior Kaiulani Ennis came around to score the opening runs of the game. However, Amherst got one run back in the bottom of the first, as a double down the left field line from sophomore Audrey Hansen '21 brought home Kopatic. The Lancers led 2-1 at the end of the first inning.
The Mammoths evened the score in the bottom of the third on an RBI groundout from sophomore Ronnie Falasco '21. Worcester State threatened to retake the lead in the top of the fourth after junior Samantha Stake roped a two-out triple to the gap in right center, but the Lancers couldn't get her across.
The score was still 2-2 into the bottom of the fifth, when Amherst exploded for four runs to take a 6-2 lead. Sophomore Alyson Plaman '21 and first-year Sage Innerarity '22 each contributed two-run singles in the inning to give Amherst their first lead of the contest.
Ennis connected on an RBI double in the top of the seventh to score Ashley Lynch from second, but Worcester State couldn't close out the rally, stranding runners on second and third to close out the season opener.
First-year Talia Bloxham '22 earned her first collegiate win for Amherst, going six strong allowing just two earned on two hits with four strikeouts. Senior Rachel Frisch took the loss in the circle, throwing 4.2 innings and allowing five earned on seven hits.