KEENE, N.H. – The Keene State College softball team dropped a pair of drastically different games against league-leading Plymouth State University in a Sunday afternoon doubleheader at Owl Athletic Complex. The Panthers escaped with a 2-1 win in the first game before holding off the Owls 14-9 in the nightcap.
- Keene State: 8-18, 4-6 LEC
- Plymouth State: 21-11, 9-1 LEC
How It Happened – Game One
Keene State put the tying run in scoring position in the seventh, but could not cash in as the Owls lost a 2-1 pitcher's duel in the opener. Cassie Woods had a run-scoring double, while JoEllen Racicot went 2-for-3. Olivia Indorf and Brittany DaMota each had a hit for KSC, who was stymied by PSU starter Caitlyn Miller (11-6).
The game was scoreless for the first four full innings, as Miller and Molly St. Germain traded zeroes. Despite that, both offenses had chances to break through. In the second, Plymouth had two infield singles and first and third with two down, but nothing came of that. In KSC's half of that same inning, two singles and a walk loaded the bases, but the Owls were kept off the board when the inning ended with a strikeout and a pop up.
PSU had another chance in the fourth after getting two more singles, but St. Germain got out of it. This was not the case in the fifth, however, as Hannah Seidner led off with a single and moved up on Nora Butler's base hit. A walk to Ashley Deyo loaded the bases with nobody out before Plymouth broke the ice when Seidner scored on a wild pitch. St. Germain prevented any further damage, as she got a strikeout and fielded a comebacker to cut down the run at home before getting a fly out to end the inning.
The Owls got the leadoff runner on to start the fifth but could not score and Plymouth added what proved to be a critical insurance run in the sixth. Mel Goss started the inning off with a double and moved to third on a sacrifice bunt before scoring on Seidner's two-out single to left, making it a 2-0 lead for PSU.
Keene State went down in order in the sixth, but put together a rally when they were down to their last out in the seventh. Racicot singled down the left field line before Woods roped a double to center that trimmed the deficit to 2-1. The Owls now had the tying run at second, but a grounder to short from Kristin Boduch ended the game.
St. Germain (5-9) tossed another complete game, but took the tough luck loss, allowing just two runs while striking out four.
How It Happened – Game Two
The tables flipped in the second game as the teams combined for 23 runs and 28 hits, but the Owls' comeback from 10-0 down fell short. Indorf went 3-for-5 with a double and two runs batted in as KSC got hits from seven different people and RBIs from six. Shae Crosby had two hits, including a double, while St. Germain and DaMota also had a pair of singles. Plymouth's offense, which got 10 hits from the top four in their order, was led by Abrie Davis, who had four hits and drove in five runs. Cassidy Emerson went 3-for-5 and drove in three.
The Panthers scored early and often while building a big advantage. Three consecutive singles in the first produced a 2-0 lead right away. PSU tacked on another when Kayla Nester's base hit produced a run, making it 3-0 before the Owls came to the plate.
KSC was unable to answer in the first despite putting two on and Plymouth kept adding to their lead in the ensuing frames. Singles from Davis and Emerson, and a double from Jen Landers helped the Panthers put up five quick runs in the second for an 8-0 lead. Davis was at it again in the very next inning, as she plated two more with another single that made it 10-0.
The Owls sprung to life from there, scoring nine times over the next three innings. In the third, they put two in scoring position with one out and got an RBI single from Lauren Rousseau to get on the board. An error later in the inning allowed two more to come home and KSC added another on DaMota's RBI groundout to get within 10-4.
Trailing 12-5 going into the bottom of the fifth, the Owls engineered another rally to inch even closer. KSC got a single and a walk to start the inning before both runners moved up on a passed ball. An error then allowed one run to score before the Owls loaded the bases with one down. Indorf cashed in, scoring two with a single to left that made it 12-8. Still another run crossed the plate when Crosby scored on Miller's wild pitch, drawing KSC within three (12-9). The Owls threatened for more in the sixth, as Boduch singled to put two on with two down, but a fielder's choice ended the frame.
Plymouth tacked on two insurance runs in the seventh and Keene State was held off the board in their half of the inning as the comeback attempt fell short.
Olivia McGrath (2-7) started and pitched the first inning for the Owls before Issie Pratt pitched the second. St. Germain then pitched the next five, striking out eight. Allison Moylan (4-5) got the win in relief for PSU.
Around the Horn
- Keene State's offense has scored 27 runs in their first four home games and, overall, they have had at least one extra-base hit in seven consecutive games and double-digit hits in four of the last five.
- With four hits on the afternoon, Indorf is now batting .333 on the season and has a hit in five straight games.
- Keene State continues a busy stretch by playing their third home twin bill in four days on Tuesday, April 24, when they host UMass Boston at 3:30 pm.
- Plymouth State will entertain Southern Maine for two games on the same day and time.