Lyons improve to 28-4 overall and 12-2 in NEWMAC play
NORTON, Mass. – The Wheaton College softball team, ranked No. 23 in the latest National Fastpitch Coaches Association (NFCA) Top 25 poll, swept a pair of New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) games away from MIT by scores of 3-2 and 6-2 on Saturday afternoon at Clark Field.
Prior to today's game, Wheaton seniors Allison Baker (Orange, Conn./Amity Regional), Ashley Brillon (Attleboro, Mass./Bishop Feehan), Jenna Rocha (Rehoboth, Mass./Dighton-Rehoboth), Ashley Vertente (Fairhaven, Mass./Fairhaven) and Vanessa Campbell (Manchester, N.H./New Hampton School) were all honored for their contributions towards the softball program.
WHEATON 3, MIT 2
The Lyons earned a walk-off victory in game on as sophomore Kelly Welch (Wood Dale, Ill./Fenton) ripped a game-winning two-out single up the middle with the bases loaded scoring classmate Madeline Hatch (Acton, Mass./Acton-Boxboro).
Hatch led off the seventh with a double to left-center, while freshman Rebecca Seifert (Franklin, Mass./Franklin) followed with an infield bunt single to third base to get the offense going. After Brillon flew out to center, sophomore Emma Hart (Lincoln, R.I./Lincoln) reached on a fielder's choice to load the bases before sophomore Marissa Timoteo (Jupiter, Fla./Jupiter) flew out to right field setting the stage for Welch's game-winning RBI single.
Junior Emily Berardi (Boston, Mass./Boston Latin) picked up the win (7-3) in relief throwing 1 2/3 innings alongside one hit. Classmate Noelle Christmas (Plymouth, Mass./Plymouth South) was dealt the no-decision on 5 1/3 innings pitched, five hits, two runs (both earned), zero walks and six strikeouts.
MIT junior Ellie Fodor (Trenton, Mich./Trenton) took the loss (4-10) on 6 2/3 innings, nine hits, three runs (all earned), one walk and a game-high seven strikeouts.
The Engineers jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the third inning on a solo home run to left field by freshman Ali Trueworthy (Rochester, N.H./Spaulding), her first of the season.
Timoteo evened the score for Wheaton in the bottom half with a sacrifice fly to right field scoring Hart and Seifert gave the Lyons a 2-1 advantage in the fifth with an RBI bunt single to second.
In the sixth, MIT responded with one run on three hits and two runners left on base to make it a 2-2 contest. Freshman Natalie Shifflet (Poway, Calif./Del Norte) led off the frame with a single up the middle and advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt. Classmate Mackenzie Donnelly (Helena, Mont./Helena) followed with the game-tying hit slugging a double to left field. After Christmas gave up a single up the middle in the Engineers' next at-bat, Berardi entered the game and recorded a pop out and a ground out to squander a second and third scoring threat.
WHEATON 6, MIT 2
Baker pushed her record to 12-2 overall on the season going five innings, yielding six hits, one run (unearned) and one walk. Freshman Danielle Cimino (Cumberland, Maine/Greely) finished off the remaining two innings on four hits, one run (earned), zero walks and a game-high four strikeouts.
Engineers' junior Karly McLaughlin (Edwardsville, Ill./Edwardsville) suffered the loss on one inning pitched, five hits and three runs (all earned).
Rocha gave Wheaton a 1-0 advantage on the scoreboard in the first with an RBI single and Hatch tacked on two more runs with a base hit to center scoring freshman Morgan Walsh (Norwell, Mass./Norwell) and Berardi. Hart doubled in the frame, while Berardi and Walsh both had base knocks.
With the bases loaded in the second, Rocha worked her 96th career walk to push across another run and Berardi lifted a sac fly to right field for a 5-0 gap. Rocha entered this weekend's doubleheader ranked second among active career leaders in walks among all NCAA Division III student-athletes.
Walsh capped the scoring for the Blue and White in the fourth with an RBI single to the pitcher. MIT received one run in the third on an RBI double from sophomore Tori Jensen (Holliston, Mass./Holliston) and a run-producing single by Shifflet in the sixth.
Wheaton (28-4, 12-2 NEWMAC) travels to Smith College for a NEWMAC doubleheader on Friday, April 18 with game one scheduled for 3 p.m. MIT (7-15, 4-8 NEWMAC) visits Clark University for a twinbill on Tuesday, April 15 at 3 p.m.