COLCHESTER, Vt. – The Merrimack College softball team held on for two dramatic wins at Saint Michael's on Thursday afternoon, winning by scores of 5-3 and 2-1 in 10 innings to register another sweep and improve its record in Northeast-10 Conference Northeast Divisional games to 7-0 on the season.
Score (G1): Merrimack 5, Saint Michael's 3
Score (G2 – 10 inn.): Merrimack 2, Saint Michael's 1
Records: Merrimack (21-8, 8-3 NE10) | Saint Michael's (3-13, 3-4 NE10)
Location: Doc Jacobs Field | Colchester, Vt.
How It Happened (G1)
- 1st/2nd inning – The first game of Thursday afternoon would begin quietly for both teams, with junior Megan Cook (Bellingham, Mass.) taking the mound for Merrimack with one of the best ERAs in the conference this season. Each team would be held to just one hit in the first two frames.
- 3rd inning – Merrimack would open the game's scoring in the top of the third, opening up for three runs on four hits. After back-to-back two-out singles put two Warriors on base, junior Alyssa Williamson (Scarborough, Maine) registered her first of three hits in the game, knocking in a run and seeing another score on a throwing error to put Merrimack up 2-0. Sophomore Caitlin McBride (Danvers, Mass.) would then follow with the fourth straight two-out hit for Merrimack, scoring Williamson with an RBI double to stretch the lead to 3-0.
- 3rd inning – The three-run lead would be brief for Merrimack as Saint Michael's would answer with two runs in the bottom of the inning by way of a single, an error in the field from the Warriors and a two-RBI triple to cut the lead to 3-2 after three.
- 5th inning – Following some small ball from the Warriors in the inning, Williamson would extend the lead to three runs with her second two-out RBI single of the game in the top of the fifth inning. Merrimack would have a chance to extend the lead even further but would leave the bases loaded.
- 6th/7 inning – A pair of sophomores would nab another run for Merrimack in the sixth as a one-out single from Hannah Johnson (Middleboro, Mass.) would be followed by an RBI triple from Nicole Nanof (Goffstown, N.H.) to put the Warriors up 5-2 after six. The Purple Knights would threaten with another run in the bottom of the seventh to cut the score to 5-3, but junior Brooke Bogacz (Tyngsboro, Mass.) would close the game out for her second save.
How It Happened (G2)
- 1st-3rd inning – Junior Courtney Zambello (Sharon, Mass.) would take the mound for the Warriors in game two in what would turn out to be a pitcher's duel, with Danielle Brown taking the mound for Saint Michael's. Each team would register just one hit through the first three innings, with the Warriors managing two base runners in that stretch thanks to an error.
- 4th inning – Senior captain Samantha Waskowitz (Killingworth, Conn.) would try to get things going for the Warriors in the fourth, ripping a two-out double to left field to put a runner in scoring position. Despite hit batsmen after Waskowitz, she would not get further then second in the inning. Saint Michael's would respond with a two-out double of their own in the bottom of the inning, but Zambello would record an out on the next batter.
- 5th inning –The first run of the game would come in the fifth inning for Merrimack, started by a leadoff bunt single from senior Morgan Phipps (Melrose, Mass.). Classmate Mariah Tenney (Winchendon, Mass.) would follow that with her second triple of the season, scoring Phipps to put the Warriors up 1-0.
- 7th inning – The Purple Knights would head to their final at bat still trailing the Warriors by a run and Merrimack three outs away from a sweep. Danielle Barbato would change that for Saint Michael's with a leadoff home run in the seventh to tie the score at 1-1 and send the game to extra innings.
- 10th – After the Warriors would leave the bases loaded in the eighth inning, they would bounce back in the 10th with the international tie breaker in play, putting a runner on second to start the inning. With the runner advancing to third on a wild pitch, Williamson would again come through for Merrimack with another RBI, ripping a sacrifice fly to right to take a one-run lead. Senior captain Haley Currie (Burlington, Mass.) would close out the final four innings for Merrimack, not allowing a single hit to seal the 10-inning win and sweep for the Warriors.
Inside The Numbers
- G1: WP – Cook (6-3) 4.1 IP, 4H, 2R, 0ER, 7K | SV – Bogacz (2)
- G2: WP – Currie (9-2) 4.0 IP, 0H, 0R | SP – Zambello: 6.0, 4H, 1ER, 3K
- Cook's sixth win of the season saw her register a strikeout for more than half of the outs she recorded on Thursday. She also did not allow an earned run in the start, dropping her ERA on the season to 1.50 which ranks second in the NE10 this season. Worth noting that she also has 19 more innings pitched than any other player in the top four of ERA.
- Zambello and Currie combined to record an impressive pitching line of 10.0 IP, 4H, 1R, 3K in game two's 10-inning win. Currie did not allow a single base runner in four innings pitched and now ranks fifth in the NE10 with a 2.06 ERA.
- As Williamson and Tenney continue impressive 2017 campaigns at the plate, they both sit in the top-10 in the NE10 in batting average this season, with Williamson ranked fifth at .416, and Tenney ranking eighth at .372.
The Warriors continue road action tomorrow with a non-conference doubleheader at LIU Post beginning at 1:00 p.m.