NORTH DARTMOUTH, MA-The University of Massachusetts Dartmouth's softball team swept a non-conference doubleheader against visiting Curry at the UMass Dartmouth Athletic Complex Wednesday. The Corsairs won the opener, 8-5, and then rallied in the nightcap for a 3-2 walk off win.
UMass Dartmouth struck first with four runs in the bottom of the first inning of the opener. After a pair of singles from sophomore shortstop Emily Pontes (Tewksbury, MA/Essex Agricultural Tech HS) and freshman centerfielder Olivia Kenyon (Canton, MA/Canton HS) and a walk to senior second baseman Breanna Marcyoniak (Westfield, MA/Westfield HS), senior first baseman Brittany Eldridge (Raynham, MA/Bridgewater-Raynham HS) blasted a grand slam over the right field fence, giving the Corsairs a 4-0 lead. In the bottom of the third, Eldridge delivered again with a solo shot over the left field wall, pushing the UMD lead to 5-0. Senior third baseman Tracie Calvert (Sandwich, MA/Sandwich HS) doubled to left field, plating another run for the Corsairs, increasing their lead to 6-0 after three innings.
The Colonels cut into the deficit with a three-run fourth inning. Curry junior catcher Mikaela Carney (N. Reading, MA/N. Reading HS) had an RBI double that dropped just out of reach of the diving attempt by UMD senior left fielder Elizabeth Mulready (Rockland, MA/Rockland HS), followed by two-RBI single from sophomore shortstop Megan Flaherty (Medway, MA/Medway HS), cutting the UMD to 6-3. UMass-Dartmouth padded their lead with two runs in the bottom of the fourth with Pontes scoring on an error, then Marcyoniak came around on a single by senior designated hitter Kaitlin Hogan (Tewksbury, MA/Shawsheen HS), staking UMD to a 8-3 lead. Curry added two runs in the top of the seventh, one coming in on an error and the final run scored on a fielder's choice, as the Corsairs took the first game, 8-5. UMD senior pitcher Ashley Felaccio (3-5, Acushnet, MA/Fairhaven HS/Massasoit CC) earned the complete game win, allowing five runs (four earned) on seven hits with four strikeouts. Curry sophomore pitcher Chelsey Munsey (3-4, Leominster, MA/Eagle Hill School) took the loss, surrendering eight runs (six earned) on seven hits with five strikeouts in four innings of work.
In the nightcap, Curry jumped out to an early 2-0 lead in the first inning on an RBI single from senior third baseman Joneiha Veiga (Brockton, MA/Brockton HS), then senior outfielder Caitlin Luquet (Walnut Creek, CA/Carondelet HS) scored while Veiga got caught in a rundown between first and second. Curry threatened in the fifth inning with the bases loaded, but Eldridge struck out Luquet, and then forced a groundout to third base, thwarting the Colonels efforts.
The Corsairs rallied in the bottom of the sixth to tie the game. Pontes singled, reached third on a double by Kenyon, and then scored on a wild pitch. Kenyon would come around to score on an RBI single by Eldridge, knotting the score at 2-2 going into the seventh. In the bottom of the seventh, with two outs, Pontes smacked a triple into the right centerfield gap, then scored on a walk off single from Kenyon, securing the 3-2 victory.
Eldridge (7-11) pitched a complete game win, allowing two runs on eight hits with seven strikeouts. Curry freshman pitcher Deanna McMahon (2-2, Hanover, MA/Hanover HS) took the loss in 6 2/3 innings, giving up three runs on nine hits with three strikeouts.
"It was good to see our bats deliver all the way around," said UMass Dartmouth Head Coach Amy Sasin. "Our underclassmen stepped up for us in the second game, which is nice to see. We had much better plate discipline today; we struggled in the beginning of the second game with chasing some pitches. It was a matter of just settling down and trusting in our hands and being able to drive the ball to the opposite field. I tip my cap to Brittany [Eldridge], to hit a grand slam and then follow with another home run is pretty amazing. This should be a nice confidence builder for us going forward and we need to maintain the confidence from today going into tomorrow's games with Bridgewater."
UMass Dartmouth is now 11-25, while Curry is 20-19. The Corsairs will return to action when they host Bridgewater State Thursday. Curry will participate in the Commonwealth Coast Conference Tournament this weekend.
UMASS DARTMOUTH SOFTBALL