DARTMOUTH, Mass. -- Sophomore Jill Richards (Kingston, Mass.) came within an out of a perfect game before settling for a one-hit shutout in the opener, as UMass Dartmouth swept a Little East Conference softball doubleheader from Castleton by scores of 3-0 in the lid-lifter and 4-2 in the nightcap in games played Sunday afternoon at the UMD Softball Complex.
Richards retired the first 20 batters she faced in the first contest for the host Corsairs (9-7, 2-0 LEC) before issuing a five-pitch walk and surrendering a single to left field, as she induced a game-ending groundout and finished with six strikeouts to pick up her second win of the season. Sophomore Leah Major (Fairhaven, Mass.) provided the only run Richards would need in the opener with a second inning single up the middle, and UMass Dartmouth tacked on a pair of fifth inning insurance runs on an RBI single from freshman Lauren Talbot (Windham, Maine) that was followed by a throwing error.
Talbot rapped out three of the Corsairs’ eight hits in the opening game, while Major and junior Nicole McSweeney (Bridgewater, Mass.) added two hits each for the hosts. Freshman Miranda Fish (Getzville, N.Y.) drew the seventh inning walk in the first setback for the visiting Spartans (5-6, 0-2 LEC), which was followed by senior Tori Swaine’s (Oakdale, N.Y.) single. Freshman Kylie Wright (Newport, Vt.) went the distance in the lid-lifter for Castleton, as she allowed an earned run in falling to 3-2 on the spring.
UMass Dartmouth grabbed a 1-0 lead in its first at-bat of the nightcap on freshman Lindsay Chubbuck’s (Berkley, Mass.) RBI single, but Castleton took a 2-1 edge in the top of the third when freshman Jamie Boyle (Pownal, Vt.) drew a bases loaded walk and sophomore Devin Millerick (Vernon, Vt.) followed with a run-scoring infield single. The Corsairs evened matters in the bottom of the frame when Chubbuck scored on an error, and the hosts took a 3-2 cushion in the fourth on Talbot’s RBI single to center before closing out the scoring in the fifth on McSweeney’s double down the right field line.
McSweeney collected two of UMass Dartmouth’s six second game hits, as the Corsairs also received a double off the bat of sophomore Kylie Fletcher (Dighton, Mass.). Junior Kate McDonald (Scituate, Mass.) scattered six hits and struck out four over the first four innings inside the circle to earn the win for the hosts, while freshman Anna Kerwood (Florence, Mass.) tossed three scoreless frames to pick up her first career save. Millerick and freshman Kate LaPan (Hudson Falls, N.Y.) each had two of Castleton’s eight nightcap hits, as freshman Machaila Arjavich (Meriden, Conn.) allowed the decisive run in an inning of relief work to fall to 1-1 on the season for the Spartans.
UMass Dartmouth heads to Framingham, Mass. on Tuesday afternoon to take on Framingham State in a non-league doubleheader beginning at 3:00 pm, while Castleton travels to Troy, N.Y. on Wednesday afternoon to square off with Rensselaer in a non-league twinbill that also begins at 3:00 pm.
(Photo Credit: Lyrik Gelmete '21)