When and Where: April 13, 2016 – Manchester, N.H. (SNHU Softball Field)
Scores: Game One: Southern New Hampshire University 1, Saint Anselm College 0 (10 Innings) | Game Two: Southern New Hampshire University 4, Saint Anselm College 3
Records: SNHU 18-9 (10-3 Northeast-10 Conference), Saint Anselm 9-19 (5-10 Northeast-10 Conference)
Sophomore Sarah Lavallee (Candia, N.H.) delivered a pair of walk-off hits and earned a win in the circle to lift Southern New Hampshire University to a Northeast-10 Conference softball doubleheader sweep of Saint Anselm College on Wednesday. The Penmen took game one in 10 innings, 1-0, before coming away with a 4-3 victory in the nightcap.
Lavallee ended a 10-inning affair in the lid lifter with a bases-loaded single before connecting on a solo shot to straight away center field in the home half of the seventh to cap off game two.
Wednesday's opener was a pitcher's duel between Lavallee and the Hawks' Arika Brochu, as each tossed a complete game and carried a shutout into the 10th inning. Lavallee scattered eight hits, struck out four and did not walk a batter in 10 innings of work, while Brochu surrendered an unearned run, allowed six hits, walked three and fanned a pair in nine-plus.
Neither side was able to generate much offensively until the sixth inning, when Saint Anselm loaded the base with one out and came within inches of plating the game's first run. After Megan Murrell reached on an error and Pattie Turner doubled to right center with one away, Julie LeClair loaded the bases on the second Southern New Hampshire miscue of the frame. Karoline Leavitt stepped in next and lifted a fly ball to right that was caught by freshman Erin Garczynski (Norwood, Mass.), and Garczynski fired a strike to the plate to cut down Murell on a bang-bang play to keep the game scoreless.
The Penmen threatened in the sixth as well, as they put a pair of runners in scoring position. Sophomore Brittany Perdigao (Stoughton, Mass.) reached on a fielder's choice before moving to third on a single by senior Lindsey Bolduc (Londonderry, N.H.) that put runners on second and third with two outs. Brochu escaped the jam, as she induced a lineout to end the inning and maintain the 0-0 stalemate.
Lavallee and Brochu continued to navigate through the opposition's lineup with relative ease over the next three and a half innings until Southern New Hampshire was able to break through with the game-winning run in the 10th. The Penmen started with a runner on second by virtue of the International Tiebreaker and after a fielder's choice off the bat of junior Erin Morrissey (Commack, N.Y.), Torsiello walked to load the bases for Lavallee. She lined a 1-2 offering into the gap in left center that brought in freshman Dianna Jamgochian (Arlington, Mass.) and provided the hosts with the 1-0 triumph.
Senior Mo Hannan (Scarborough, Maine) went 2-for-4 in game one with a double while Lavallee reached base twice with a walk and the walk-off single.
Southern New Hampshire grabbed an early 1-0 lead in Wednesday's second game before Saint Anselm plated three-straight runs to take a 3-1 edge heading into the bottom of the fifth. Perdigao laced a one-out triple in the bottom of the first and came around to score when the Hawks' mishandled a fly ball with two away. The visitors took the lead in the third on a two-run double by Murrell, and added an insurance run on an RBI two-bagger from Leavitt.
The Penmen used three solo homers over the span of three straight innings to trim the deficit, tie the game and ultimately win it. Torsiello led off the home half of the fifth with a no-doubter to left before Bolduc took the first pitch she saw in the sixth out to left center to knot the score at three. The final blow came in the seventh, when Lavallee launched the pay-off pitch to dead center to secure the victory.
Sophomore Stephanie Martin (Milford, Mass.) upped her record to 3-0 for SNHU with two innings of shutout relief. Martin allowed just one hit and struck out one in support of junior Nicole Gubellini (Salem, N.H.), who tossed the first five innings and surrendered three runs on eight hits while striking out three.
- Southern New Hampshire earned two points in the 2015-16 Queen City Cup standings, and now holds a commanding 22-10 lead over Saint Anselm in the battle for Manchester supremacy.
- The Penmen have won nine of their last 12 against the Hawks dating back to the 2013 season.
- Bolduc's sixth-inning blast was the 24th of her career and moves her into sole possession of No. 2 all-time in career home runs at Southern New Hampshire.
The Penmen close out their season series with Assumption College (11-19, 8-9 NE-10) on Thursday when they head to Worcester, Massachusetts for a 3 p.m. first pitch.
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