Softball Drops Pair of One Run Contests to Defending NEWMAC Champion Babson

Team - WPI Softball 2022

Babson Park, MA --- WPI softball dropped a pair of tight games on the road at defending NEWMAC Champion, Babson in the conference opener for both squads. The Beavers took game one, 1-0, and game two, 4-3. The result evens the Engineers' season mark to 10-10, starting NEWMAC play 0-2, while Babson, winners of seven straight, improve to 14-4, 2-0.

GAME ONE

WPI out-hit Babson 4-3 and got a strong outing from Katie Martin (Bedford, NH) on the mound, but a first-inning home run from the Beavers' Audrey Labouliere (Pipersville, Pa.) decided the 1-0 game.

After Babson's Moira O'Reilly (Columbus, Ohio) mowed through the first three WPI batters of the afternoon, Labouliere sent a one-out pitch to right center in the bottom of the frame to put Babson on top in the pitchers' duel.

Babson got back-to-back doubles in the bottom of the third from Abrianna Natoli (Fairfield, CT) and Molly Hennessy (Tallahassee, FL), followed by a walk to load the bases. However, Martin got a strikeout and a fly-out to end the inning.

WPI threatened in the top of the fourth as Shaina Lazarus (Thousand Oaks, CA) led off with a double down the right field line, but O'Reilly struck out the final three batters of the frame to strand the runner at second.

The Crimson and Gray again put runners in scoring position in the sixth, but again came away empty. Lazarus doubled with one out, followed by a strikeout. Kallie Case (Arlington, VA) then singled to left sending Lazarus to third, but a line-out ended the inning scoreless.

It was three up, three down for both pitchers in their final innings of work, as Babson held on for the 1-0 win.

WPI's Martin threw six innings, allowing one run on three hits with four strikeouts in the loss. O'Reilly picked up her seventh win of the season, tossing seven scoreless innings, allowing four hits with 11 strikeouts.

GAME TWO

Another tight game went Babson's way, as the Beavers scored in the bottom of the seventh to walk away with a 4-3 victory.

Babson struck first, scoring a solo run in the bottom of the second. A WPI error allowed Chloe Joslin (Wyoming, RI) to reach second, and she was sent to third on a single from Lexi Morris (Lexington, MA). Joslin and Morris then executed a double steal with Joslin scoring to make it 1-0.

The Engineers countered in the top of the fourth, as a one-out single from Alicia Salvalzo (Hudson, NH) started things. A Babson fielding error and a strikeout put runners on first and second before a Case single to right scored Salvalzo to knot the game at 1-1.

WPI took its first lead of the day in the top of the fifth inning as Stephanie Bishop (Milford, NH) launched a home run to left field, putting the Crimson and Gray up, 2-1. The lead was short-lived, however, as Babson answered with a run in the bottom of the fifth to tie the game. A two-out double from Natoli scored on a Hennessy single.

The teams again traded runs in their next at-bats, making it a 3-3 game. Babson scored in the bottom of the sixth on a single from Joslin to score Isabel Aguilar (Avon, CT) who notched a one-out double earlier. WPI tied it up in the top of the seventh as a single from Sydney Russell (Arlington, VA) scored on a Salvalzo base hit.

In the bottom of the seventh, Athena Hadjipanayis (Rye, NH) led off the inning with a single to right. Natoli put down a sac bunt to advance Hadjipanayis to second and she took third on a WPI throwing error. Hennessy then got the game-winning hit, sending a single to left field to score Hadjipanayis for a 4-3 Babson victory.

Both teams used three pitchers in the game. Babson's O'Reilly got the win, throwing two innings, allowing one run on two hits with two strikeouts. Logan MacDonald (Wilmington, MA) tossed 4.1 innings, allowing one earned run on three hits with three strikeouts. Nicole Sestito (Sea Girt, NJ) threw two-thirds of an inning, allowing just one hit.

WPI's Sophia Togneri (Hudson, MA) suffered the loss, throwing one inning, allowing two runs, one earned, on four hits. Kelly Pritchard (Orange, CT) threw three innings, giving up one run on two hits, while Martin threw two innings, allowing an unearned run and two hits.

WPI hosts Coast Guard on Friday in its NEWMAC home opener with the doubleheader beginning at 3:30pm at Rooftop Field. Babson has a non-conference clash next, hosting Salve Regina on Wednesday, starting at 3pm.