BOSTON, Mass. - The eighth-seeded Simmons College softball team's season ended with a 6-3 loss to number two seed Saint Joseph's College (Maine) this afternoon in the Great Northeast Athletic Conference Championship Tournament at Daly Field in Brighton, Mass. The Sharks conclude the campaign with a 15-25 mark, while the Monks improve to 22-16.
SJC advances to take on number four seed Albertus Magnus College, a 15-5 winner over sixth seed Norwich University, at 8:00 p.m. at Daly Field.
First year second baseman Lauren Del Vacchio (Murrieta, Calif.) and first year center fielder Molly Hennessey (Charlton, Mass.) each went 2-4 with a run batted in for Simmons, while senior catcher Alison Gauvin (Whitefield, Maine) finished her career by going 2-3 with a triple and two runs scored. Hennessey closes out the season with a 14-game hitting streak. First year hurler Alex Soqui (Acushnet, Mass.) (3-6) suffered the loss, giving up five runs (three earned) on nine hits and a walk in six innings of work.
First year second baseman Libby Pomerleau (Saco, Maine) reached base four times for Saint Joseph's, going 3-3 with a walk and a run scored, while sophomore first baseman Melodie Bailey (Lebanon, Maine) was 2-4 with a run batted in and a run scored. Sophomore shortstop Meghan Elliott (Blackstone, Mass.) also went 2-4 with an RBI and a run and senior center fielder Carla Tripp (Lovell, Maine) was 2-4 with a run scored. Senior starting pitcher Kylie McFadden (Dover, N.H.) (11-7) went the distance, allowing three runs (two earned) on seven hits and two walks, while fanning two in seven complete innings.
The Monks faced a 2-1 deficit, before scoring three runs in the fourth to take a 4-2 lead. Bailey opened the frame with a single down the right field line and moved to third when senior third baseman Mariah Harrison (Buxton, Maine) reached on an error and advanced to second to put both runners in scoring position with no outs. Sophomore designated player Kristal Smith (Pittston, Maine) grounded out to the pitcher and Bailey crossed the plate to tie the game at 2-2. First year left fielder Kaylee Burns (Saco, Maine) singled to right to drive in Harrison with the go-ahead run. Sophomore right fielder Katie Chadbourne (Jaffrey, N.H.) followed with a single to left, to put Burns on second. Tripp stroked a single to center, but Burns was gunned down at the plate on a strike from Hennessey in center field. Saint Joseph's scored its fourth run when Tripp drew a throw on a delayed steal, but made it back to first, while Chadbourne scored from third on the front end of the steal.
The Sharks pulled to within 4-3 with a run in the fifth when Gauvin roped a triple down the left field line and scored on a single up the middle from Del Vacchio. Senior third baseman Brianna Rastello (Salem, N.H.) reached on an error to put two runners on base with no outs, but McFadden escaped with three straight outs.
The Monks scored two insurance runs in the top of the seven to give them a 6-3 margin. Pomerleau and Elliott reached on consecutive singles to begin the frame, before Bailey singled to right center with an out to score Pomerleau with their fifth run. Harrison singled deep in the hole on the left side to plate Elliott with the sixth run.
Simmons got a leadoff single off the bat of Del Vacchio in the bottom of the inning, but the Sharks were unable to put a rally together as SJC came away with the win.
Saint Joseph's broke into the scoring column with a run in the third to take a 1-0 lead. Tripp broke up a no-hitter with two outs in the frame and Pomerleau followed with an infield single, before Elliott stroked a single to center to bring home the game's first run. Simmons responded with a pair of runs in the bottom of the frame to take a 2-1 edge. Gauvin cracked a leadoff single to left center and later scored when Rastello's fly to right was mishandled for an error. The Sharks took advantage as Hennessey followed with an RBI single through the left side to score Rastello and give Simmons a 2-1 lead.