Saniuk homers as softball drops twinbill at Tufts
|Stacia Saniuk ’09 hit her 18th career home run, extending her own Bates record.|
MEDFORD, Mass. — The Tufts University softball team, ranked No. 9 nationally, remained unbeaten for the season (15-0) and improved to 3-0 in NESCAC East Division play with a double-header sweep of the Bates College Bobcats, 9-1 and 14-5, on Saturday afternoon at Spicer Field. Both were five-inning games.
Bates (2-9, 0-3 NESCAC East) has its doubleheader against Brandeis, scheduled for tomorrow, postponed indefinitely. The Bobcats are next scheduled to play a three-game series against Colby next weekend, starting with a game at Colby on Friday at 4:30 p.m.
In game one, Lauren Gelmetti was strong on the rubber for Tufts, allowing only two runners through the first three innings. The Jumbos notched the first run of the day in the second inning when they executed a double-steal with Laura Chapman taking second base, while Danielle Lopez swiped home.
The bottom of the third saw Tufts open the lead up to 5-0 with four runs on four hits including a two-run homer off the bat of Lopez.
The Bobcats tallied their only run of the game with a leadoff home run by senior Stacia Saniuk (Sharon, Mass.) in the fourth, extending Saniuk’s Bates career homers record to 18. Tufts got the run right back in the bottom of the inning when Cara Hovhanessian hit a solo blast of her own.
The lead was at five runs for Tufts entering the bottom of the fifth as Lopez led things off and reached third base on a fielding error by Bates. Casey Sullivan then drove her in with a sacrifice fly to make it 7-1 Jumbos. Chapman followed with a double, and after the second out of the inning was recorded, Tufts knocked three consecutive singles to push two more runs across for the 9-1 victory. Hovhanessian had the game-ending hit.
Gelmetti was the winning pitcher going all five innings surrendering just one run on three hits while walking one and striking out two. Bates starter Kristen Finn (Winthrop, Mass.) took the loss in 4.2 innings of work, allowing nine runs (six earned) on 12 hits.
Tufts picked up where they left on in game two as they jumped ahead with four runs in the first inning, which was capped by a three-run homer by Lopez, her second four-bagger of the day. The Bobcats cut the lead in half in the second, scoring two runs on just one hit, but the bats for the Jumbos kept hitting as they returned the favor in the bottom of the second with an RBI double by Lena Cantone and an RBI single by Christy Tinker.
The Jumbos extended their cushion to 8-2 through three innings and Bates tried to chip away as they took advantage of free passes to score two runs. First-year pinch hitter Katherine Buckley (Middlebury, Conn.) walked with the bases loaded, then first-year LF Karen Ullmann (Ramsey, N.J.) was hit by a pitch to bring home the second run of the inning. The Bobcats added another run in the fifth on a sacrifice fly by senior Val Beckwith (Woburn, Mass.) to make it 8-5 Jumbos going into the bottom of the fifth inning.
In the last of the fifth, Tufts sent six batters to the plate and all six came around to score. Sullivan led things off with a single and Chapman joined her with a single of her own. Mira Lieman-Sifry plated both runners with a double. Both senior LF Roni Herbst and Cantone followed with run-scoring hits to build the Tufts advantage to 12-5. With a runner on and nobody out in the inning, sophomore C Julia Silberman stepped up for her only plate appearance of the afternoon and promptly deposited the ball over the centerfield fence for a walk-off two-run home run to win the game, 14-5.
Stefanie Tong picked up the win for the Jumbos while Izzie Santone pitched the final two innings for a save, allowing just one run on two hits. Senior Christina Knobel (Walpole, Mass.) suffered the loss for the Bobcats as she went two innings, giving up six runs on five hits.