WORCESTER – Freshman Amber VanHemel's (Coconut Creek, FL) RBI single in the sixth proved to be the offensive difference and sophomore Katherine Shade (Glencoe, IL) made a game-saving catch in the seventh as MIT took game one of the 2016 NCAA Division III Softball Worcester Super Regional, 1-0, Friday afternoon at Rooftop Field. Senior Alexandra Marshall (Glen Head, NY) tossed a complete-game two-hitter.
Cambridge's Engineers (31-11) have a chance to sweep at 12pm tomorrow while the hosts (38-8) have the opportunity to force the 2:30pm winner-take-all 'if game.'
VanHemel chased sophomore Jasmin Joseph (Woodland Hills, CA) home with a two-out RBI single in the top of the sixth before Shade pulled in a long fly ball of the bat sophomore RiAnna May (Westminster, CO) to end the game in right. Marshall set down 13 in-a-row and struck out three and walked two in the win (24-10).
While Marshall, the NEWMAC Pitcher of the Year, and WPI sophomore Casey Arpin (Uxbridge, MA) traded zeroes on the scoreboard through three complete, it was first the head-to-head matchup between Marshall and junior Lindsay Gurska (Revere, MA), the NEWMAC Player of the Year, that provided the intrigue. The two battled in a 12-pitch at-bat that ended with a liner to second. The two squads left three aboard in scoring position, including sophomore Nina Murphy-Cook (Roseville, CA) 60 feet away in the first.
Freshman Renee LeClaire (Merrimack, NH) had the defensive highlight for the hosts as she made a nifty diving catch toward the right field line to end fourth.
Joseph was a perfect 3-for-3, including a double, while sophomore Amanda Lee (Saratoga, CA) and VanHemel each added a hit for MIT.
Murphy-Cook had both of the Boynton Hiller's hits and stole a pair of bases. Sophomore Ama Biney (Worcester, MA) and junior Hope Shevchuk (Burlington, CT) chipped in with sacrifice bunts. Sophomore Kelsey Saucier (Worcester, MA) allowed one hit in two innings of relief.
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