FITCHBURG, Mass. – The Curry College softball team split a non-conference double header on Wednesday afternoon as the Colonels visited Fitchburg State to make up the games originally scheduled for March 23. Curry heads back home with a record of 10-11 while the Falcons walk away with a 13-7 mark.
Game One: Fitchburg State 9, Curry 1 (F/5)
Fitchburg State got the scoring started in the first as a McKenzie Lambert (Wilbraham, Mass.) double drove in the first run of the game before the junior came around to score on an RBI single by Olivia Pietersen (Norton, Mass.) to give the Falcons a 2-0 lead. The home bats weren't done, though, as the bottom of the second inning saw five more runs cross the plate on five hits, including back-to-back doubles to lead-off the inning, breaking the game open at 7-0. After six straight Colonel batters were sat down, Fitchburg State rattled off five consecutive two-out singles to push two more runs across the plate and snatch a nine run lead, meaning the hosts needed just three outs to end the game. Curry had their backs against the wall as they entered the fifth inning, having just one hit in the books through the first four. Alexis Buckner (Foxborough, Mass.) got the inning started with a base runner by getting hit by a pitch, however, before a Taylor Newcomb (Millville, Mass.) double put two runners in scoring position as the Colonels looked to extend the game. After a pop up recorded the first out of the inning, Kiana Lloyd (Worcester, Mass.) singled to center to make the score 9-1, but Newcomb was held at third. She would be left there as the game wrapped up after a pop up and a strikeout closed the book as the Falcons earned a run-ahead victory.
Buckner, Newcomb, and Lloyd recorded the only three hits for Curry while six different Falcons collected multi-hit games. Lambert aided the winning effort with three RBI. Newcomb (3-2) suffers just her second loss of the year after giving up seven earned over four while Mikayla Harnois (Attleboro, Mass.) moves to an impressive 8-2 after surrendering just one in five innings of work to go along with four K's.
Game Two: Curry 8, Fitchburg State 4 (F/8)
The Fitchburg State offense was back at it as game two got underway, scoring three first-inning runs to jump out in front. Despite the early offense, the contest turned into a pitchers' duel, as the teams combined for just three hits over the next three innings. After a slow start to the day, the fifth inning ushered in a welcome change for the Colonels, as the visitors took their first lead of the game with a four-run frame. A one-out error started the scoring by sending sophomore Jocelyn Dimond (Weare, N.H.) home. Three batters and three hits later, Curry had built a 4-3 lead, capped by a Sienna Kulpa (Taunton, Mass.) double, her first of the year. After an infield single by Caroline Johnson (Milton, Mass.), the Colonels were threatening once more with the bases loaded and just one out on the board. The Falcons escaped the jam, however, forcing a runner out at the plate before a strikeout stopped the bleeding. Fitchburg State got a run back in their half of the fifth as Maddie Medina (Pelham, N.H.) crossed the plate on a Michelle LeBlanc (Ashburnham, Mass.) single, but that would be all as the game headed to the sixth. The bats would once again quiet as the scoring took a break, but with a chance to walk-off, the Falcons got 60 feet from victory in the bottom of the seventh. Nicole Sylvester (Everett, Mass.) led off the inning with a single, but had to stay put through a couple of outs before consecutive singles pushed her to third and loaded the bases with two down. Curry won the battle, though, as Carrigan Costello (Wolcott, Conn.) induced a fly ball to center to get out of the threat and send it to extras. The visitors controlled the extra frame right from the get-go, benefitting from the International Tie Breaker (ITB), which put a runner on second to start the inning. The first four batters reached base in the eighth to drive in a pair of runs before an out had been recorded. Shortly after, a sac fly and an error brought two more runs across the plate to give the visitors an 8-4 advantage. In the bottom of the inning, Costello made the ITB a non-factor, retiring all three batters she faced to secure the game two win.
Catcher Michaela Colleran (East Bridgewater, Mass.) and the first baseman Buckner posted matching 2-for-5 performances, as they each, along with Newcomb, drove in two runs apiece. Pietersen went 3-for-4 with a run scored and an RBI in the losing effort. Emma Campbell (Goffstown, N.H., 5-3) suffers the loss, striking out a pair and giving up six runs over three and two thirds. Costello evens up at 5-5, collecting her sixth complete game of the year with five strikeouts and four runs given up (three earned). In the victory, Dimond swiped her seventh bag of the year, which ranks her third in the conference.
Fitchburg State will follow the split by staying home to face Plymouth State tomorrow at 3:30 p.m. in another non-conference double-header. Curry's schedule resumes on Saturday, April 6, as the Colonels host Commonwealth Coast Conference opponent Nichols in a twin billing. First pitch of game one is scheduled for 1:00 p.m. at the D. Forbes Will Field in Milton, Mass.