Anchorwomen Sweep Softball In Little East Conference Opener

PROVIDENCE, R.I.—First Team All-Conference outfielder Stacy Pokora scored three times and added five RBI to lead Rhode Island College (5-9, 2-0 Little East) to a doubleheader sweep over UMass Boston softball (3-8, 0-2 Little East) Saturday afternoon at the Dayna A. Bazar Softball Complex.

The senior center fielder finished the day 4-for-5 with a walk  to lead the Anchorwomen to victories of 8-2 and 6-5 in Rhode Island College's home opener.

Freshman Gia Raczkowski (Stoneham, Mass.) and junior Kristina Bove (Medford, Mass.) led the Beacons with three hits and two RBI apiece.  Senior Toni Scola (Worcester, Mass.) was the only other Beacon to record an RBI, as she chipped in with her first two runs batted in of the season in Game Two.

Game One: Rhode Island College 8, UMass Boston 2

Rhode Island College pounded out two home runs and five total extra-base hits to blow by the Beacons 8-2 in both team's Little East Conference openers.

Pokora and third baseman Justina Thoma each registered a home run and three RBI in backing senior ace Michelle Sylvestre. Sylvestre took it from there, as she limited the Beacons to just eight hits and two earned runs over seven innings of work.

Bove led UMass Boston in Game One with a 3-for-4 contest with two RBI. Freshman Kaitlyn Morse (Arlington, Mass.) was the only other Beacon to record multiple hits with two hits in four at-bats.

UMass Boston took their lone lead of the game in the top of the third. Morse led off the inning with a double to left-center and scampered home from third when Bove laced a single into right-center field with one out.

The Anchorwomen would answer in the bottom of the inning against UMass Boston pitcher Emily Gray (New Bedford, Mass.), with four runs on four hits and an error.

With one run in and runners on second and third, Thoma belted a ball over the left-field fence to make it 4-1 in favor of Rhode Island College.

The Beacons cut the deficit to 4-2 in the top of the fifth inning, when Bove singled home Lyndsey Capra (Lowell, Mass.) with two outs, but the Anchorwomen would respond once again. 

Rhode Island College picked up two runs in the bottom of the fifth on a Pokora homer and added two more in the sixth to push the lead to 6-2.

Game Two: Rhode Island College 6, UMass Boston 5

The Beacons showed much more resilience in Game Two as they battled back from a 4-1 deficit to tie the game at 4-4, before falling just short in the 6-5 loss.

Raczkowski carried the UMass Boston offense in game two with two hits, two runs and two RBI, along with her first collegiate home run.

Scola added a base hit and two RBI, while Erika Vecchiet (Pequannock, N.J.), Samantha Hemstock (Northford, Conn.) and Morse each came home to score once.

Pokora led the Anchorwomen with a 3-for-3 game with a run and two RBI, while Kristina Gingell added two doubles, two runs and two RBI.

UMass Boston jumped on the board first for the second straight game, but failed to grab a larger lead despite loading the bases with just one out. With the bases loaded and one out, Scola singled to left field to plate Vecchiet and make it 1-0. Rhode Island College freshman starter Lindsey Cabral shut the Beacons down from there though, striking out the next batter and catching a hard liner back to the mound to end the inning.

The Anchorwomen struck for four runs in the bottom of the third, with all four runs coming with one out. After Michelle Zullo (Everett, Mass.) retired two of the first three batters, three of the next four batters struck for doubles to make it 4-1 Rhode Island College after three.

Scola cut the deficit back to two in the next half-inning, as her sacrifice fly to right field allowed Raczkowski to scurry home.

Raczkowski evened the game up two innings later, when she blasted the first home run of the season for UMass Boston to tie the game at 4-4. With Hemstock on first base with one out, Raczkowski sent a moon-shot over the left-center field fence to tie the game.

Rhode Island College answered back with two of their own runs in the bottom of the sixth-thanks to two hits, two walks and two more two-out runs. Zullo once again retired two of the first three batters, but Gingell doubled to left field to score Sykora to make it 5-4 in favor of the hosts. That's when Zullo began to lose her control, as she walked each of the next three batters to make it 6-4 after six.

The Beacons rallied in the seventh inning but fell just short. Capra led off the inning with a single and moved to second after Morse worked a walk. After back-to-back infield outs put runners on second and third with two down, Morse raced home on a wild pitch to make it 6-5. With the tying run 60 feet away and Vecchiet at the plate, Cabral induced the senior second baseman to ground out to end the game.

UMass Boston will be back in action on Tuesday afternoon when they host #25 Wheaton College in a doubleheader slated to start at 3:00 p.m.