Bats Come Alive in Softball DH Split with Worcester State

Bats Come Alive in Softball DH Split with Worcester State

DARTMOUTH, Mass. – The University of Massachusetts Dartmouth saw no shortage of offense on Thursday, totaling 17 hits in a doubleheader with Worcester State as the Corsairs nearly pulled out the comeback win in game one before shutting out the Lancers in game two.

The Basics
Scores: Worcester State 4, UMass Dartmouth 3 | UMass Dartmouth 4, Worcester State 0
Records: UMass Dartmouth (10-7) | Worcester State (3-9)

How it Happened
Worcester State 4, UMass Dartmouth 3
The Corsairs send a run across and loaded the bases in the bottom of the seventh, but Worcester State senior Mary McKeown (Shrewsbury, Mass.) held off the final push for the complete-game victory in the circle.

McKeown yielded 10 Corsair hits with all three runs earned, but fanned sixed and received an errorless performance by her defense. The Lancers scattered seven hits offensively, led by Haley Scola's (Worcester, Mass.) 2-for-3 outing with an RBI.

UMass Dartmouth junior Emily Colton (Kingston, Mass.) connected for 3 hits in 4 appearances at the dish, driving in a run, and sophomore Maddie O'Gryzek (Norfolk, Mass.) laced a 2-for-4 game.

The Lancers jumped out to a 4-0 lead through the first three frames, scoring a run on an error in the first and tacking on an RBI double by Rachel Couto (Chelmsford, Mass.) in the second. In the third, back-to-back doubles set the stage for Kayla Humphrey (Wallingford, Conn.) to knock a sacrifice fly for the RBI. Worcester State's third double on the inning, this time by Scola, plated the final run of the game for the visitors.

In their turn in the third, the Corsairs responded by cutting the lead in half. With lead-off hitter Nicole McSweeney (Bridgewater, Mass.) and O'Gryzek on base, Colton dropped a ball to shallow right for the RBI. The next batter, Cierra Sheerin (Bridgewater, Mass.) rounded Colton from second for the RBI groundout.

Freshman pitcher Annika Evensen (Lake Forest, Calif.) kept the Corsairs in reach throughout the final three innings, forcing the Lancers to strand runners. After fruitlessly loading the bases in the fifth, UMass Dartmouth challenged for the comeback in the end stanza. Colton and senior Marissa Spinuzzi (Fair Lawn, N.J.) knocked singles to join Sheerin on base with one out. Freshman Brittany Polk (Bridgewater, Mass.) flew out deep enough to left to round Colton, but the Lancers caught the runner on third before the end of the play.

Junior pitcher Hannah Smith (Attleboro, Mass.) fanned two in the opening three innings, with three runs earned on five hits.

UMass Dartmouth 4, Worcester State 0 (5 inn.)
Smith rebounded to silence the Lancer bats in the second game, completing a five-inning no-hitter while the Corsairs broke through on seven hits to prevail in the shortened nightcap.

Polk and Spinuzzi both laced extra-base hits for RBI to lead UMass Dartmouth offensively in game two, with freshman Maxine Vincent (Hanson, Mass.) additionally registering an RBI single.

Smith clamped down to allow just two Lancer baserunners over the five frames. With runners on the corners and two outs in the bottom of the stanza, Spinuzzi doubled to right center to plate both teammates and open up an early lead.

Five quick half-innings passed for both Smith and Lancer pitcher Dakota Smith-Porter (Montague, Mass.) until the fourth, when the Corsairs extended the advantage off reliever Carly Zielinski (Monson, Mass.). Polk sent a shot to the right-center fence for her first career triple, easily plating classmate Maddie Lee (Mattapoisett, Mass.) from first. In the next at-bat, Polk dodged the throw home on the single by Vincent, sealing the victory.

Smith-Porter took the decision despite yielding just two hits in three innings, while Smith rose to 5-4 in the circle for the Corsairs on the season.

Inside the Numbers

  • UMass Dartmouth's 10 hits in game one are the most the Corsairs have recorded in nine games since connecting for 11 against Brockport on March 13.
  • The Corsairs collect their third shutout of the season with the 4-0 win in game two, having previously held Alverno and Curry scoreless while in Florida.
  • With another runner caught stealing in game two, senior catcher Gracie Trudeau (Dartmouth, Mass.) ups her season total to seven with a percentage of 58.3.
  • With her team-leading .420 batting average, Spinuzzi sits tied for fifth in the Little East Conference and moves into a tie atop the conference rankings with six doubles on the season after Thursday.
  • The Corsairs split with the Lancers for the second-straight season and are now 14-19 all-time with Worcester State.

Up Next
UMass Dartmouth begins conference play on Sunday, hosting Western Connecticut for a twin bill beginning at 1 p.m. Worcester State opens MASCAC play on the same day, traveling to Mass. Maritime at 2 p.m.