BRIDGEWATER, Mass. – The Fitchburg State University softball team swept a Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference (MASCAC) doubleheader with Bridgewater State University on Monday afternoon at Alumni Park.
The Falcons improve to 11-11 on the season and 6-2 in the MASCAC, while the Bears fall to 9-17 overall and 2-6 in conference play.
Game One: Fitchburg State 7, Bridgewater State 6
Fitchburg State opened the scoring in the top of the first as senior Katie Gildea drove in sophomore Damari Grossi with a sacrifice fly to center field before sophomore Nicole Sylvester plated senior Tori Cyrus with a single to right for the 2-0 lead.
The Falcons upped its margin (3-0) in the following frame when sophomore Maddie Medina doubled to left and scored on base hit down the right field line.
Bridgewater State got on the board in the bottom half of the third as sophomore Tabitha Domeij singled, stole second and scored on a base hit by senior Breanna Schaffer to make the score 3-1.
The two teams exchanged runs in the fourth. Gildea knocked in Grossi with an RBI single, while BSU junior Kristyna Flaherty drove in pinch runner Alexandra Zoebisch (Plymouth, Mass.) with a sacrifice fly.
With the score 4-2, the Bears took the lead in the bottom of the fifth, scoring four runs on five hits with senior Jackie Welch blasting a three-run, bases clearing double to center that scored junior Kacie Carvalho, senior Courtney Leddy and classmate Breanna Shaffer for the 6-4 advantage. Carvalho got the scoring started in the frame with an RBI double.
The Green and Gold rallied in the top of the seventh when Medina singled to short and scored on an RBI triple to right off the bat of Cyrus before senior Katie Gildea brought home Cyrus with a base knock to left, resulting in the 7-6 game one final.
Fitchburg State was paced by Cyrus, who went 3-for-4 with a triple, two runs scored and a pair of RBI, while Gildea added a 3-for-4 effort at the dish, including two RBI. For Bridgewater State, Carvalho finished 3-for-4 with a double, one run scored and two RBI, while senior Morgan Cox chipped with two hits.
In the circle, senior Galen Kerr collected the win for the Falcons, allowing five runs (4 earned) on nine hits with five strikeouts in 6.1 innings of work. Freshman Deianeira Underhill took the loss for Bridgewater State, giving up four runs on eight hits with three K's in four innings of relief.
Game Two: Fitchburg State 8, Bridgewater State 7
In game two, Fitchburg State grabbed the lead in the top of the second as senior Jessalynne Brown singled down the right field line, moved to second and third on a fielder's choice and sacrifice bunt and crossed the plate on sophomore Kaylee Sylvestre's RBI ground out for the 1-0 margin.
Bridgewater State knotted the score (1-1) in the bottom half of the third when junior Kristyna Flaherty doubled to left center before pinch runner Julianne Coleman came around to score following a sacrifice fly off the bat of senior Samantha LoPilato.
The Falcons scored three times in the top of the fifth on an RBI double by junior Emily Comtois and a two-run double by sophomore Hayley McCarthy. The Green and Gold added three more runs in the top of the sixth to extend the lead to 7-1. Cyrus brought in Sylvestre with a sacrifice fly to center, while Comtois drove in Grossi and Medina with a double to left.
A two-run double by Welch in the bottom of the sixth\ got the Bears a bit closer, but Fitchburg answered with a run in the top of the seventh on an RBI ground by Sylvester to make it an 8-3 game.
The Bears battled back in the bottom of the seventh when Shaffer singled in Flaherty and sophomore Courtney Gouveia, while Leddy and freshman Shannon Grindle added run scoring hits, but Kerr induced a game ending groundout, resulting in the 8-7 game to final to secure the sweep for the Falcons.
Offensively for Fitchburg State, Brown went 3-for-4 with two runs scored, while Comtois finished 2-for-4, including two doubles, one run scored and three RBI. For Bridgewater State, Leddy hit 2-for-4 with a run scored, while Grindle and Flaherty added one hit and two RBI each.
On the hill, Sylvestre picked up her third win on the year, giving up three runs on six hits with three K's in six innings of work for the Falcons, while sophomore Mackenzie Holt took the loss for the Bears, yielding eight runs (3 earned) on 12 hits with one strikeout in the complete game effort.
In upcoming action, the Bears travel to Curry College on Thursday afternoon for a non-conference doubleheader with the Colonels starting at three. The Falcons head to Nichols College on Wednesday afternoon for a 3:30 non-conference twinbill with the Bison.