WALTHAM, Mass.—Brandeis University (12-12) used a pair of late-game rallies and an Allison Hecht walk-off home run to earn a sweep of UMass Boston softball (4-18) Friday afternoon at Marcus Field.
Despite holding leads of three or more run in both games, the Beacons couldn't hold on in a day that was characterized by the long ball. Brandeis won the opener 10-9 in eight innings, before taking game two by a 10-6 score.
Senior second baseman Samantha Hemstock (North Brandford, Conn.) hit a pair of home runs in game two, to tie the program record for homers in a single contest. She became the sixth Beacon in program history to record the feat and moved into fourth-place all-time in career homers with her five roundtrippers.
Brandeis outhomered the Beacons 5-3 on the day, en-route to getting back to the .500 mark for the first time since mid-March.
Game One: Brandeis 10, UMass Boston 9 (8 Innings)
Despite holding leads of 6-1 and 9-6, UMass Boston couldn't overcome timely home runs from Amanda Shore and Hecht in a wild first contest.
After cutting the deficit to 6-5 heading to the seventh, Shore hit a lead-off, game-tying homer in the bottom of the seventh to send the game to extras. While UMass Boston would take a 9-6 lead after the top of the eighth, Hecht capped off the bottom of the frame, with a two-run, walk-off homer to deliver Brandeis their second-straight victory.
Senior Kirsten Morrison (North Reading, Mass.) paced the Beacons' offense with her second homer in three games and a team-best three RBI. Gia Raczkowski (Stoneham, Mass.) and Kayla Harris (Cumberland, Maine) each tied Morrison with their team-best two hits and also added an RBI.
Shore led the Judges with a perfect 3-for-3 game, while recording a run and three RBI.
Nikki Cote picked up the win for the hosts by going the full eight innings and striking out 11, while conceding five earned runs.
UMass Boston got off to a roaring start when Morrison belted a solo shot to lead off the second inning.
After Brandeis answered with a single run in the third, UMass Boston grabbed a 4-1 lead in the top of the fourth. Lauren Mitsiaris (Taunton, Mass.) drove in Raczkowski with an RBI single to give the Beacons a 2-1 lead with two down. With two runners in scoring position and two outs, Harris laced an RBI single to left to score Mitsiaris, and Lyndsey Capra (Lowell, Mass.) also came in to score-thanks to a Brandeis error.
Brandeis answered with a two-run, two-out single of their own in the bottom of the fifth and added two more runs in the sixth on an RBI single and a Beacons' throwing error.
With the Beacons needing just three outs to grab the win, Shore opened the bottom of the seventh with a game-tying solo shot, before Zullo came on in relief and retired the next three batters to force extra innings.
UMass Boston grabbed a three-run lead in the eighth on two hits and two key Brandeis errors. Raczkowski drove in Hemstock with a one-out single and Raczkowski and Mitsiaris both scampered home on a throwing error by the catcher.
The Judges weren't fazed though, as it took them just four batters to claim the win. With two runs in and Madison Sullivan on first, Hecht hammered a walk-off win for a 10-9 Brandeis win.
Game Two: Brandeis 10, UMass Boston 6
UMass Boston grabbed a 5-2 lead midway through the contest, only to have Brandeis score eight of the final nine runs to earn a sweep in the annual series.
Anya Kamber and Hemstock went back-and-forth with their two home runs apiece, but it was Cori Coleman's three-run blast in the sixth that gave Brandeis a 10-6 lead and took the air out of a potential Beacons' comeback.
Hemstock went 2-for-4 in the contest with two runs scored and four RBI in her second four RBI game of the spring. Raczkowski added two hits of her own; while Morse scored a team-best two runs.
Zullo struggled with the long ball for a second-straight doubleheader, as she allowing 15 hits, 10 runs and nine earned over six innings.
Coleman and Kamber each drove in three runs for Brandeis, while Hecht kept her momentum from game one going, as she went 3-for-3 with a run and an RBI.
Samantha Wroblewski overcame early adversity to go seven strong, as she allowed eight hits and four earned runs for her fourth win of the year.
Brandeis grabbed a 2-0 lead after the first inning, as Kamber delivered with a two-run homer, after a Beacons' error to begin the frame.
The Beacons got one run back in the second, as Mitsiaris singled to score Morrison to cut the deficit to 2-1.
UMass Boston grabbed their first lead in the third inning, with Hemstock crushing her first two-run homer of the day, with Morse coming in to score ahead of her.
The score would stay at 3-2 until Hemstock's next at-bat, as the senior crushed a two-out homer to right-center field to make it 5-2 in the top of the fifth, with Morse trotting home ahead of her once again.
Brandeis would strike back in a back way though in the bottom of the fifth, as they scored five runs to grab a 7-5 lead. The Judges used seven hits, including Kamber's second homer of the game, to take control of the contest.
The Beacons would cut the deficit to 7-6 in the sixth inning, as Capra laced an RBI single to score Raczkowski.
That would be as close as the Beacons would get though, as Coleman cleared the fences in the bottom of the sixth for a 3-run homer.
UMass Boston will look to snap their six-game losing streak on Saturday, when they travel to Plymouth State University for a Little East Conference doubleheader starting at 1:00 p.m.