KEENE, N.H. - Molly St. Germain's grand slam was just the beginning as the Keene State College softball team scored eight consecutive runs to erase a 6-0 deficit, then had to come back again late for a 14-12 win over the University of Southern Maine in a Senior Day doubleheader split Sunday afternoon at Owl Athletic Complex. The Huskies used a two-run homer in the sixth to take the first game 3-2.
- Keene State: 9-15, 4-4 LEC
- Southern Maine: 14-11, 3-5 LEC
How It Happened - Game One
In a low-scoring opener, Ashley Tinsman's two-run home run in the sixth inning proved to be the deciding runs as Keene State, despite outhitting the visitors 9-6, left ten on base and fell by one run for the third consecutive game. St. Germain and USM starter Ashley Alward traded zeroes in the early going, with a Huskies single in the top of the first the only hit in the first two frames. Southern Maine struck in their half of the third with a two-out run, as a pair of singles helped make it 1-0. KSC stranded second and third in the third, but did take the lead in the bottom half of the fourth after Brooke Arruda singled and Courtney Votto followed with a two-run blast to left, her second career homer. The Owls threatened for more, but a pair of one-out singles did not result in any damage, just as KSC's bases loaded chance in the fifth did not lead to any additional runs in a 2-1 game. The Huskies made it hurt in the very next inning, as Tinsman's own two-run shot put the visitors back on top 3-2. The Owls again tried to rally in the sixth as Julie Elwell and Cassie Woods singled to put the tying and go-ahead runs on, but a pair of grounders got USM out of trouble, and Madison Greene (4-1) then sent KSC down 1-2-3 in the seventh.
St. Germain (4-7) allowed three runs while pitching all seven innings, striking out four. Woods, Arruda and Olivia McGrath all finished with a pair of hits. Votto reached three times, going 1-for-2 with a home run, two RBI, and two walks.
How It Happened - Game Two
In a wild second game, Keene State trailed 6-0, led 11-7, and trailed 12-11 before ultimately scoring three times in the sixth for a 14-12 victory. The Owls banged out a season-high 15 hits and scored double-figure runs for the third time in the last seven games. St. Germain had a monster game at the plate, going 3-for-5 with a grand slam and five runs batted in while scoring three times. She was far from alone, as Woods (2-2, 3 BB, 3 R), Votto (2-4, RBI, R, BB), Emma Pede (2-3, 2 RBI, 2 R), and McGrath (3-4, 3 RBI) also had multiple-hit showings.
It looked as if Southern Maine took complete command of the game right away, as they notched six runs and six hits in a first inning that saw them send 11 batters to the plate. The Huskies took that same lead into the fourth, limiting KSC to just two hits in the process. However, the Owls turned the tables in grand fashion in their half of the fourth with one of their biggest innings of the season that saw them score eight times - all with two outs - to take an 8-6 lead. St. Germain's long grand slam to center kicked off the rally and brought KSC within 6-4, and the Owls eventually took the lead for the first time (7-6) after McGrath's single up the middle scored Lauren Rousseau and Katelyn Hill. Southern Maine did answer with a run in the very next inning to get within 8-7, but Keene State appeared to be gaining command when they responded with three more of their own, as a three-run, five-hit fifth inning that saw RBI singles from Votto, Pede and McGrath gave the Owls a four-run lead (11-7).
The Huskies had other ideas, though, as they plated five runs in the sixth on three hits and three errors while surging ahead once more. The second out of that frame was Brynn Hink's grounder that provided USM a 12-11 lead. In fitting fashion for the game, Keene State immediately hit back by plating three to go ahead again, this time for good. Kylie Frank started the bottom of the sixth with a single and Woods worked a walk to put the go-ahead run on base. St. Germain then tied the game with a single, and the Owls still had second and third with nobody out after both runners advanced on the throw in from center. A pair of quick foul outs threatened to end the rally, but Rousseau's hard grounder up the middle got past shortstop Kaitlyn Nelson and scored two as KSC went up 14-12. St. Germain, who entered in relief in the sixth, then sent the Huskies down in order in the seventh to preserve the Owls' wild win.
Around the Horn
- Woods reached base seven more times in the doubleheader, recording four hits and three walks, and is now hitting a scorching .417 on the season with a .539 on-base percentage. She has a hit in eight consecutive games.
- Votto and St. Germain's home runs were KSC's first since the opening game of the season when Arruda went yard in a 6-3 win over Olivet College.
- The Owls honored St. Germain, Votto, and Elwell for their contributions to the program between games.
- Keene State is back at Owl Athletic Complex on Tuesday, April 16 for a twinbill with LEC rival Plymouth State University beginning at 3:30 pm. The Panthers are currently 5-1 in conference play.
- Southern Maine hosts UMass-Dartmouth for two on the same day at 3:00 pm.