SPRINGFIELD, Mass.—Amherst College scored four runs in the bottom of the first inning and never looked back, to end the best season in UMass Boston softball history in the NCAA Regional Championship Round.
Amherst College 6, UMass Boston 2
(UMass Boston 30-13)
(Amherst College 31-10)
HOW IT HAPPENED
The Mammoths struck for five two-out runs, three of which were unearned, to earn the title of NCAA Regional Champions.
With the loss, UMass Boston ends their season with a program-best 30 wins and the program's first-ever NCAA Tournament appearance.
The Beacons tacked on five walks, with Annie Thomas (Lunenburg, Mass.) working a pair of base on balls.
In the circle, Greenspan allowed 10 hits and six runs (three earned) in the final game of her freshman season. She tacked on two strikeouts and did not issue a walk.
Amherst junior pitcher Gina Pagan earned her third win in three days to take home Regional Most Outstanding Player honors. She allowed just four hits and two runs (one earned), while striking out 10.
Annie McCluskey paced the Mammoths with a pair of RBI, while Julia Turner scored twice.
After a 1-2-3 top of the first, Amherst struck for four runs, with the final three unearned.
With runners on first and second and one out, Kate Kopatic opened the scoring with an RBI double to right-center. After Greenspan induced a popup to third for the second out, Amherst scored a pair of runs on a throwing error on the next play. Alena Marovitz made it 4-0 moments later, when she singled to center to score Julia Turner.
The Mammoths pushed across two more runs in the third. With two runners in scoring position and two down, McCluskey sent a seeing-eye single through the right side to score both runners.
UMass Boston finally broke through against Pagan in the fourth. Morse worked a leadoff walk and moved to second on a Vento single. After a sac bunt moved both runners over, Morse was thrown out at the plate on an attempted squeeze play. Pawlina got the Beacons on the board with two down, when she lined a single up the middle to plate Vento.
The Beacons mounted their best rally of the game in the sixth. Vento singled to right and raced all the way to third base when the right fielder misplayed the ball. Gia Raczkowski (Stoneham, Mass.) walked to put runners at the corners with no outs and Tulley drove Vento in with an RBI groundout. Lauren Mitsiaris (Taunton, Mass.) and Harris walked to load the bases, but Pagan got a key strikeout to leave three Beacons aboard.
BY THE NUMBERS
- Sunday's game marked the final contest for the Beacons three seniors. Morse, Raczkowski and Mitsiaris combined for the second-most wins in program history with 70 in four years. The three combined to play in 445 games and rank first, second and fourth in career games played in program history.
- As a team, UMass Boston set a new program record with their 43 games played in a season. The previous mark had been 42 games during the 2013 season. Morse, Tulley, Vento and freshman Gigi Braga (Medford, Mass.) all played in every game.
- Mitsiaris tied the program record for career chances on Sunday. With her seven chances, she tied Lisa Polsonetti ('12) with 938 chances for her career. Mitsiaris set the record for career putouts last weekend (889).
- With her two hits Sunday, Vento closes the season as the first Beacon to reach the 60-hit mark in a single-season (61). She finished second in a single-season with her 91 total bases, just one shy of assistant coach Sue Kililea's ('10) single-season record of 92.
- Freshman Kiera Prusmack (Houston, Texas) and Morse both broke the record for at-bats in a single-season on Sunday. Prusmack (141) and Morse (140) passed Taryn Asta ('13) who had recorded 138 at-bats during the 2013 season.
UMass Boston will return 15 of their 18 players next spring, including seven of the team's regular starters.