Softball Sets Down Purple Knights In Twinbill
MANCHESTER, N.H. - Backed by strong pitching performances from freshmen Tayla Trask (Lincoln, Maine) and Alexis Bogdanovich (South Portland, Maine), the Saint Anselm College softball team completed a doubleheader sweep of the Purple Knights of Saint Michael's College Tuesday afternoon at the South Athletic Fields. After today's victories, the Hawks overall record stands at 17-23 alongside an 11-13 record within Northeast-10 Conference play. The Purple Knights fall to 5-27 overall and to 3-21 within the conference.
The Hawks captured the first game of Tuesday's doubleheader by a 9-2 score as Saint Anselm never trailed in the opener. Two straight singles to open the game by center fielder Monique Gauthier (Canton, Conn.) and shortstop Nicole Boucher (Woonsocket, R.I.) placed runners on first and third for the Hawks. Saint Anselm converted their first run of the game as catcher Lauren Galavotti (Marion, Mass.) socked a sacrifice fly to right field to plate Gauthier.
In the second inning, second baseman Kat Scafidi (Hudson, N.H.) reached base on an error by the Saint Michael's left fielder, plating designated player Cara Crowley (Lynn, Mass.) with the second run of the game. Later, Gauthier reached base on an error by the center fielder for Saint Michael's, plating Scafidi with the second unearned run of the inning.
Saint Anselm capitalized on additional errors by the Purple Knights defense as both third baseman Hannah Byrne (Lynn, Mass.) and Crowley reached on errors in the home half of the third inning. Left fielder Mary Fay (Stoughton, Mass.) drove in two runs with a single up the middle to extend the Hawks advantage.
Saint Michael's collected two runs in the visiting half of the fourth inning as a ground rule double by sophomore Bethany Falls drove in classmate Amanda Brigante with the first run of the day for the Purple Knights. An RBI single down the right field line by catcher Sarah Murray plated the second run of the inning.
The Hawks closed out the final two innings of the game by flashing power on offense as first baseman Olivia Story (Middleton, Mass.) and Gauthier smacked a three-run and a solo shot, respectively, to add four more runs in the late stages of the game.
Bogdanovich (7-9) earned her seventh victory of the season, allowing only one earned run through six innings of work. Freshman Paige Cormier (Rochester, N.H.) pitched a perfect seventh inning to relieve Bogdanovich. Purple Knights pitcher Stephanie Frank drew her 14th loss of the year, allowing seven total runs (three earned) across six innings. Junior Lauren Mercik relieved Frank in the middle innings, allowing two earned runs before exiting in favor of Frank to complete the contest.
Despite a scoreless first four innings for either side, the Hawks cracked the score first and eventually captured a 5-1 victory over the Purple Knights. In the home half of the fifth inning, two consecutive singles by Fay and Scafidi set the stage for a booming three-run home run by right fielder Hayley Lombard (Coral Springs, Fla.) that plated the first runs of the game for either side.
Saint Anselm quickly answered a Saint Michael's run in the top half of the sixth by plating two runs off of three hits in the bottom of the frame. Galavotti and Boucher singled to open the frame prior to designated player Kristen Peffer (Cumberland, R.I.) pulling a two-run single into right field that drove in a pair of runners to add insurance.
Trask (6-6) pitched a complete game, striking out eight Purple Knights batters and not allowing a single walk on the afternoon. Frank drew the loss for the second straight game for the Purple Knights, striking out three batters and allowing five earned runs. Falls relieved Frank in the final inning, allowing Peffer's two-RBI base hit but not allowing an earned run of her own.
NOTABLES: The Hawks have now collected 10 straight victories against Saint Michael's College…During that 10 game stretch, Saint Anselm has outscored the Purple Knights by a 95-to-29 margin…Pitcher Alexis Bogdanovich has allowed two runs or less in her previous five appearances, lowering her earned run average to 2.81 on the season…Shortstop Nicole Boucher has seven hits in her previous five games…Three of first baseman Olivia Story's last four hits have been home runs - she has driven in a team-best 20 runs with only 10 hits.
The Hawks return to action Wednesday, Apr. 18 as they travel to play the Skyhawks of Stonehill College in a doubleheader commencing at 3:00 p.m. in Waltham, Mass. Stay up to date with the latest news directly from the Saint Anselm College athletic department by following the Hawks on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/STAHawks) and Twitter (http://www.twitter.com/STAHawks).