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April 18, 2006

Keene State too much for PSU Softball

            PLYMOUTH, N.H. - Sophomore Melissa Scata (Medway, Mass.) and freshman Katie Allenson (Clifton Park, N.Y.) cracked two-run home runs in the fourth inning of the nightcap Tuesday afternoon to lead Keene State College to a 6-2 victory over Plymouth State University and a sweep of the Little East Conference softball doubleheader at D&M Park.

            Keene State took the opener, 6-3, behind a pair of doubles and three RBI from senior Sarah Campbell (Auburn, Mass.)  The Owls, 20-6 overall, remain atop the LEC standings at 5-1, while PSU, which had played 19 games away from home before Tuesday's home opener, fell to 3-18 overall and 1-5 in he conference.

            Campbell knocked in single runs for KSC in the first and fifth innings of the opener with clutch doubles, and she added another RBI in the third inning with a suicide squeeze bunt.  The Owls also rallied for three runs in the fourth inning, as sophomore Ashlee Nicholson (Swanzey, N.H.) led off with a home run and junior Kathleen Gambino (Freeport, N.Y.) and freshman Jessica Starkey (Keene, N.H.) contributed run-scoring hits.  Nicholson earned the win in the circle for KSC, improving to 9-4.

            Senior Rose Eaton (Concord, N.H.) had three hits in the opener for PSU, including a lead-off double in the fourth inning that led to PSU's first run.  The Panthers added another run in the sixth when sophomore Shauna Isham (Auburn, N.H./Memorial) doubled and scored on a triple by freshman Leanne Barry (Auburn, N.H./Pinkerton).

            The teams went scoreless into the fourth inning of the nightcap when Scata and Allenson went deep for the visitors.  It was Allenson's first of the season and the league-leading eighth of the season for Scata.

            PSU came back to cut the margin in half with two runs in the fifth inning.  The Panther loaded the bases on a single, a hit-batter and a third-strike-wild pitch, and freshman Heather Bartolo (Derry, N.H./Pinkerton) delivered a two-run single.  With the tying runs in scoring position, KSC got out of the inning, avoiding further damage, and then added a pair of unearned insurance runs in the top of the seventh to put the Panthers away.

            Plymouth State continues a six-game home stand Thursday with a non-conference doubleheader against New England College (4:00 p.m.)  Keene State visits Williams on Wednesday for a non-conference twinbill (4:00 p.m.)

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