Softball Takes Two One-Run Thrillers from NEWMAC Rival Emerson on Senior Day

Senior Day - WPI Softball 2022

WORCESTER -- The WPI softball team swept a NEWMAC twinbill over Emerson on Saturday afternoon on Rooftop Field. A walk-off 6-5 win in game one was followed by a tight 7-6 game two victory, as the Engineers improved to 18-12 overall, 6-4 in conference play. The Lions sliip to 13-15 overall, 0-10 in the NEWMAC. 

GAME ONE

A walk-off single from Kallie Case (Arlington, VA) capped a four-run bottom of the seventh inning, as WPI rallied for a 6-5 victory in game one. 

Emerson dented the scoreboard in the top of the first, as a pair of hits led to a 1-0 advantage. A lead-off single from Calli Pratt (Dighton, MA) was sacrificed to second on a bunt from Lexi Semanchik (Flemington, NJ) and then driven home on a Claire Overton (Wayne, PA) base hit to right-center. 

Three more Emerson runs in the top of the fourth put the Lions up 4-0. A walk, a fielder's choice, and a single from Mallory Shofi (Ridgefield, CT) loaded the bases with two out, before singles from Pratt and Semanchik scored two more to give the Lions a four-run bulge. 

WPI cut the lead to 4-2 in the bottom of the frame, as a hit batter was followed by a two-run homerun from Kelly Pritchard (Orange, CT), her second of the season. 

Emerson loaded the bases with two outs in the top of the fifth, where a sacrifice fly from Mary Kuczkowski (Litchfield, NH) pushed the lead to 5-2. That was the last run the Lions scored, as Sophia Togneri (Hudson, MA) came on in relief and got the final batter of the frame to ground out. 

Neither team pushed a run across in the sixth and heading into the bottom of the seventh, Emerson held a 5-2 advantage. 

WPI's big seventh-inning rally started with back-to-back doubles from Stephanie Bishop (Milford, NH) and Sydney Russell (Arlington, VA), closing the gap to 5-3. A sac bunt and an Emerson error plated another run before Jocelyn Diaz (Reedley, CA) drove in the tying run with a single to right-center. After a strikeout, Case singled to left-center to score Lazarus, as WPI walked off with the win. 

Togneri got the win in relief, throwing 2.1 innings, allowing just one hit with two strikeouts. Katie Martin (Bedford, NH) started the game, going 4.2 innings, allowing five runs (two earned) on seven hits with four K's. 

Jessica Gomez (West Chester, PA) suffered the loss for Emerson, allowing five earned runs on 10 hits with a pair of strikeouts. 

GAME TWO

WPI completed with sweep with a tight 7-6 in game two, again coming from behind to earn the victory. 

A busy first inning for both teams saw WPI lead 4-3 at its completion. In the top of the frame, Emerson put up three runs as singles from Pratt and Semanchik scored on a homerun from Overton to left-center. 

In the bottom of the frame, Russell walked and Sheehan notched a bunt single before RBI singles from Alicia Salvalzo (Hudson, NH) and Shaina Lazarus (Thousand Oaks, CA) tied the game at 3-3. WPI then took a 4-3 lead on an Emerson miscue, as a run scored on a throwing error after a strikeout. 

The Lions responded in the top of the second, collecting two more runs on a pair of hits. An infield single from Grace Beaulieu (Rochester, NH) and a fielder's choice from Pratt both scored on a Semanchik triple to make it 5-4 Emerson. 

The visitors increased their advantage to 6-4 with a solo run in the top of the third. Overton doubled to lead off the frame before a single from Sam Zannotti (Dudley, MA) put runners on first and third with no outs. Ally Lacey (Londonderry, NH) then reached on a fielder's choice which scored Overton for a two-run lead. 

WPI answered with a three-run bottom of the inning to go up, 7-6. With one out, Lindsay Ambrosino (Chelmsford, MA) was hit by a pitch setting up Bishop knocked her first homerun of the season to left field to tie the game. A walk and a stolen base put Russell in scoring position for Salvalzo whose single to right was the go-ahead run. 

Leading 7-6, WPI's pitching staff allowed just one hit the rest of the way to earn the doubleheader sweep. 

Lazarus got the win, throwing four innings, allowing one earned run on five hits with two strikeouts. Martin got her first save of the season pitching one scoreless, hitless inning. Pritchard also pitched in relief, going 1.2 innings, not allowing a hit. 

For Emerson, Karagan Knowles (Tucson, AZ) suffered the loss, throwing four innings, allowing six earned runs on seven hits with four strikeouts and seven walks. 

Prior to the game, the WPI softball program honored senior student-athletes Ambrosino, Bishop, Gabriella Cerbo (Middletown, NJ), senior manager Rosie Romano and graduate student Martin. 

WPI now hits the road for two non-conference match-ups on Monday at Williams. The Engineers will take Tufts at 1pm before playing the host Ephs at 5pm. Emerson is off until Friday when they play a NEWMAC doubleheader at Clark beginning at 3pm.