April 1, 2006

Softball Opens Home Schedule With Split Of UMass Lowell

COLCHESTER, Vt. Saint Michael's College and the University of Massachusetts Lowell split a pair of one-run games in Northeast-10 Conference softball action on Saturday at Doc Jacobs Field. In the opener, the Purple Knights lost to the River Hawks, 3-2, and in the nightcap, Saint Michael's (5-9, 1-1 NE-10) held off UMass Lowell (12-11, 3-1 NE-10), 2-1.

In game two, freshman Megan O'Connor (Georgetown, Mass./Georgetown) struck out 12 in a complete game seven-hitter, and left the bases loaded in the top of the seventh inning to preserve the victory. Junior Casey Brooks (Colchester, Vt./Colchester) led the Purple Knights' five-hit attack with a double, single and two runs scored, while classmate Meg Currier (Greenfield, Mass./Stoneleigh-Burnham School) plated Brooks both times with a pair of RBI singles. Sophomore Katy Newland (East Burke, Vt./Lyndon Institute) added a single for Saint Michael's, which played error-free softball in earning the win.

For the River Hawks, freshman Stacey Lajoie (Gardner, Mass.) doubled to lead off the seventh inning, and scored on the second single of the game by junior Colleen Varone (Holliston, Mass.). Freshman Cyrilla Suker (Voorheesville, N.Y.) suffered the tough-luck loss, as she struck out three and walked no one in a complete game effort.

In the opener, UMass Lowell scored in the top of the first inning to take the lead for good as the River Hawks bested the Purple Knights. Lajoie led UMass Lowell's nine-hit attack with a solo home run in the fifth inning, a double and run scored in the third inning, and a single. Sophomore Brie O'Brien (Saugus, Calif.) added two singles and an RBI, while junior Vikki Guido (Winchester, Mass.) singled and scored in the win. Junior Kristen Mahoney (Burlington, Mass.) pitched a complete game to earn the victory, allowing just eight hits and one earned run.

For the Purple Knights, O'Connor laced three singles, while Brooks singled twice and scored a run. Freshman Ashley Harkins (Colchester, Vt./Colchester) added a single and a run scored in the sixth inning, cutting Saint Michael's deficit to 3-2, but the Purple Knights left the tying run on third in that inning, and the tying run in scoring position in the seventh inning, in recording the loss. Junior Meggan Roberge (Sheldon Springs, Vt./Missisquoi Valley Union) took the loss on the mound, as she fanned two and allowed two earned runs in the complete-game performance.

Saint Michael's returns to action on Sunday, as the Purple Knights visit league-rival Pace University in a doubleheader starting at 12 p.m. UMass Lowell next plays Franklin Pierce College in a home twinbill on Thursday at 3 p.m.