DUDLEY, Mass. – Freshman Courtney Manarky (Amston, Conn.) went 4-for-7 with three runs, two RBI, and two walks over two games, as the Nichols College softball team swept Wentworth Institute of Technology in Commonwealth Coast Conference action Saturday afternoon at Nichols. The Bison captured the first game 10-2 (five innings) and won the second 9-8 (eight innings).
The Bison improve to 8-16 (4-8 CCC) while Wentworth drops to 4-20 (0-12 CCC)
In game one, Nichols jumped on top in the bottom of the first thanks to a bases loaded fielder’s choice that scored a run. Wentworth tied the game the next half inning thanks to freshman Vanessa Weymouth (Fremont, N.H.) scoring on a wild pitch.
The Bison regained the lead in the bottom of the second thanks to a wild pitch. Nichols would then do most of its damage in the bottom of the third, scoring four runs off four hits. Sophomore Jade Palladino (Lynnfield, Mass.) hit a two-run double and was followed up by a two-run home run by sophomore Meghan Sears (Tewksbury, Mass.). The Bison added three runs in the fourth, with Palladino putting up another two runs with a single.
Senior Anne Harris (Germantown, Md.) knocked in a run with a single to left in the top of the fifth to make it 9-2, but Manarky ended the game in the next half inning with a RBI bunt single.
Junior Heather Pinkston (Concord, Calif.) had the other Leopard hit and scored a run. Junior Haley Fountain (Warren, Mass.) pitched five innings, giving up one earned run off two hits while striking out five. Junior pitcher Siobhan Baker (South Portland, Maine) got the loss, as she went four and a third innings.
Game two saw the Leopards jump ahead 3-0 after the opening inning. A single by senior Liz Glavin (Ipswich, Mass.) through the left side scored freshman Megan Berryman (Middleboro, Mass.) and advanced senior Sam Curran (Quincy, Mass.) to third. Weymouth knocked in Curran with a single to left left, and Glavin scored off a throwing error two batters later. The Leopards made it 4-0 in the second with a Glavin RBI double to left center.
Nichols cut the lead to one in the bottom half of the second with a bases loaded walk and then a two RBI single to center by freshman Brianna Kilborn (North Brookfield, Mass.). Wentworth made it 6-3 in the top of the fourth, but the Bison tied the game by scoring three runs off one hit and two errors. It would take extra innings to determine a winner. Curran hit a RBI double to center in the top of the eighth to give Wentworth the 7-6 lead. An error in center field scored Curran to give the Leopards a two-run cushion. Nichols started the bottom of the eighth with sophomore Christina Barrows (Carver, Mass.) placed on second. After Manarky advanced Barrows to third with a groundout and freshman Kendall Meehan (Danvers, Mass.) walked with two outs, Fountain smashed a three-run home run to left to walk-off with the victory.
Fountain picked up the win after pitching six innings in relief, giving up one earned run off nine hits while striking out three. Curran was handed the loss as she pitched four and a third innings in relief, giving up two earned runs off three hits.
Glavin went 4-for-5 with a run and two RBI in the second game. Curran was 3-for-5 with three runs and a RBI, while Berryman had two hits in five at bats with three runs.
Wentworth finishes the season at home against conference foe Western New England on Sunday at 1 p.m. Nichols travels to Roger Williams on Sunday afternoon.