Mansfield, Conn. - April 12, 2017 - The nationally-ranked Springfield College softball team split a pair of decisions in a non-conference doubleheader with Eastern Connecticut on Wednesday afternoon at Eastern Stadium.
The Pride fell in the first of two games, 7-5, before prevailing over the Warriors, 7-3, in game two, a nine-inning affair.
With the split, Springfield College, which was ranked No. 19 in the latest National Fastpitch Coaches Association (NFCA) National Rankings, is now 22-4, while Eastern Connecticut now holds a mark of 7-13.
Up next, Springfield College will travel to Clark University on Friday, April 14 for a New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) doubleheader with the Cougars. First pitch is set for 3:30 p.m.
Eastern Connecticut 7, Springfield College 5 -- Game One
Freshmen Meghan Sastram (Oxford, Conn.) and Jen Slane (Tolland, Conn.) each picked up RBI, and the Pride put together a late rally in the top of the seventh inning, but it fell short of Eastern Connecticut, 7-5, in the first game of Wednesday's afternoon doubleheader.
Senior pitcher Nicole Cring (Cooperstown, N.Y.) got the nod in game one, and pitched 3.2 innings, giving up six hits and six runs to suffer her first loss of the season. Classmate Jordyn Moquin (Southington, Conn.) came on in relief and pitched 2.1 innings, giving up one run.
Eastern Connecticut got on the board first in the bottom of the second inning when Samantha Bardos (Norwalk, Conn.) doubled to left-center, scoring Haleigh Cordello (Litchfield, N.H.) to give the Warriors a 1-0 lead. Springfield College countered in its next at bat, as Allie Wheeler (Agawam, Mass.) and Carianna Gasdia (Wakefield, Mass.) took advantage of an Eastern Connecticut error to score and give the Pride a 2-1 advantage.
After the Warriors evened the game in the bottom of the third, Springfield College regained a one-run lead when Alicia Pavadore (Taunton, Mass.) scored on a wild pitch, but Eastern Connecticut would rattle off four runs in the bottom of the fourth to take a 6-3 lead over the Pride.
The Warriors would tack on an insurance run in the bottom of the fifth, but Springfield College got things going in the top of the seventh, pulling to within a pair on RBI singles from Sastram and Slane, but the rally fell short, resulting in the 7-5 setback.
Springfield College 7, Eastern Connecticut 3 -- Game Two
Springfield College rattled off four runs in the top of the ninth inning and Shelby Allen (Oakland, N.J.) picked up the final three outs in the bottom half of the frame as the Pride forced a split at Eastern Connecticut with a 7-3, extra-inning defeat of the Warriors on Wednesday.
Allen pitched a complete game, going the distance with a career-best 10 strikeouts while only allowing eight hits and two earned runs in 9.0 innings. Offensively, Talia Loda (East Haven, Conn.) led the Pride with three hits, as Wheeler and Gabby Alfieri (Cornwall, N.Y.) registered two RBI apiece in the win.
Springfield College picked up runs in the top of the third and fourth innings after Wheeler and Kirsten Drobiak (Griswold, Conn.) both drew walks with the bases loaded to give the Pride an early 2-0 lead over the Warriors. After Eastern Connecticut evened the score in the bottom of the fourth, it took until the eighth inning for either team to budge, but the Pride finally took a one-run lead when Mackenzie Navarro (Taunton, Mass.) singled down the left field line, plating Rachel Ball (Coventry, R.I.) to make it 3-2, Pride.
The Warriors countered with a run in the bottom of the eighth to even the game at three, but the Pride scored four times in the top of the ninth, including a two-run single from Alfieri and an RBI single from Alexyss Conley (Bloomingburg, N.Y.) to make it 7-3, Springfield College.
After Eastern Connecticut wasted an out to move its runner to third, Allen forced two fly balls, which were caught to seal the victory.