BOSTON, Mass.—#19 Babson College handed UMass Boston softball a pair of defeats in both team's New England openers Wednesday afternoon at the UMB Softball Field.
#19 Babson College 5, UMass Boston 1
#19 Babson College 8, UMass Boston 0 (5 Innings)
(UMass Boston 2-10)
(Babson College 9-4)
HOW IT HAPPENED
It was a tale of vastly different games, as the Beacons led the nationally-ranked Beavers early on and hung with the Beavers throughout a well played game one. UMass Boston's defense cost them in game two, as the Beavers ran away with a mercy-rule victory thanks to six unearned runs.
Babson College senior Ali Reilly struck out nine, allowed just one run, and helped herself at the plate to lead the Beavers to a 5-1 victory.
The senior moved to 6-0 on the season and tied the program record for career wins by earning her 50th win in her 90th career appearance. She allowed eight hits and just the one earned run, while finished 2-3 with a run scored and an RBI at the plate.
Fellow senior Samantha Smith added a big two-run double in the third inning to provide all the offense the Beavers would need.
UMass Boston partially broke out of their offensive slump with two doubles and nine total hits against one of the Beavers' aces.
Junior Roxanne Vento (Arlington, Mass.) went 2-2 with two walks, a double and an RBI. Sophomore Gigi Braga (Medford, Mass.) added two hits in two at-bats, while Ari Bilotta (Leominster, Mass.) tacked on a double and a run scored.
UMass Boston's defense played tremendously well behind the combination of Drew Washington (Bordentown, N.J.) and Megan Hoben (Bedford, Mass.). The Beacons turned three double plays and left fielder Kiera Prusmack (Houston, Texas) and second baseman Kelly Danahy (Kingston, Mass.) both made three phenomenal plays in the field.
Washington took the loss after going four innings and allowing six hits and five earned runs in her first collegiate start at the UMB Softball Field. Hoben struck out three and did not allow a run in two innings of relief work.
The Beacons, who played the role of visitors on their home field, jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the top of the first. Bilotta opened the inning with a double to the left-center field wall and scampered home on Vento's double to right that bounced off the right field fence.
Washington kept the high-scoring Babson offense off the board in the first two innings, but the Beavers struck for three runs in the third. Jamie Hoffman led off with a single through the right-side and came across to score on Reilly's RBI double to center field. Two batters later, Smith rocketed a double to left field to score both Reilly and Josephine Mares.
Babson extended their lead to 4-0 in the fourth on a Tori Roche homer and made it 5-0 on Erica Pavlo's two-out, RBI pinch-hit single in the fifth.
UMass Boston put runners on base in every inning but the second against Reilly, but struggled to scratch across any more runs. The Beacons left multiple baserunners on in three-straight innings, including the bases loaded in the fourth. With the bases loaded and two down, Bilotta rocketed a line drive right at the third baseman for the third out of the inning.
Babson College took advantage of five Beacons' errors and sophomore pitcher Brooke Stock allowed just two hits, to help the Beavers to cruise to victory.
Stock struck out five and allowed just two singles in the fourth inning to improve to 3-3 on the season.
Junior Annie Quine went 2-3 with a run scored and three RBI, while Ashley Tango tacked on a run scored and two RBI for the Beavers.
Sophomore Jess Greenspan (Rocky Hill, Conn.) was the tough luck loser for the Beacons. Greenspan allowed seven hits and eight runs-but just two of the runs were earned.
Vento and Danahy registered the lone Beacons' hits in the loss.
Babson took the lead for good in the bottom of the first inning. Smith punched a one-out single up the middle, stole second and then easily scored on Quine's double to left field. The Beacons' defense cut down Quine trying to stretch her double into a triple, as Prusmack and Braga connected perfectly on their throws to get Quine at third base.
After a scoreless second, the Beavers struck for six two-out runs in the bottom of the third. With two on and two outs, Quine doubled Babson's lead with a single into no-man's land in right center. The Beavers then took advantage of four Beacons' errors and a Tango two-run double to extend their lead to 7-0.
UMass Boston put their first runner on base with one out in the top of the fourth. After Stock retired the first 10 batters she faced, Danahy and Vento recorded back-to-back singles. With two down and runners on the corners, Taylor Pawlina (Woonsocket, R.I.) blasted a ball to the wall in center field, but center fielder Kayla Schinik tracked it down a step shy of the wall.
The Beavers tacked on another run in the bottom of the fourth and Stock retired the side in the fifth to close out the contest.
BY THE NUMBERS
- UMass Boston left 13 runners on base on the day, including 11 in game one. Babson left just six runners on base throughout the doubleheader.
- The Beacons' three double plays in game one, was their most since April 6, 2013 when they turned three double plays against MIT. UMass Boston also managed to turn the double plays in three different ways. They recorded two outs thanks to a lineout, a groundout and a fly out.
- With the two losses, UMass Boston falls to 8-15 all-time against the Beavers. Babson has won six-straight against the Beacons and limited the Beacons to one or fewer runs in all six of the contests.
- UMass Boston's eight-game losing streak is their longest since they lost nine in a row from April 21-April 30, 2016.
UMass Boston will host Castleton University on Thursday for their official 2018 home opener. The non-conference doubleheader will be played at 3/5 pm and will mark the first-ever meeting between the two future conference foes.