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PSU Softball drops first two games in Florida

            FT. MYERS, Fla. - The Plymouth State University softball team dropped its first two games in Florida on Sunday, losing a slugfest in the opener and a pitchers' duel in the nightcap at the annual Gene Cusic Collegiate Classic.

            Plymouth State scored seven runs on 10 hits in the first game, but ended up on the short end of a 15-7 decision to New Paltz State (N.Y.).  The second game went to extra innings tied at 0-0, but Bowdoin College pulled out a 1-0 victory with a run in the bottom of the eighth.

            The Panthers jumped out to a 4-1 lead against New Paltz on the strength of a three-run third inning.  The Hawks rallied to take the lead with six runs in the bottom of the fourth, and put the game away with seven more in the last of the fifth.

            Senior Danielle Normand (Rumford, R.I.) led the Panther hitters in the game, going 3-for-3 with three runs batted in.  Sophomore Sammi Romano (Kingston, N.H.) contributed an RBI double, and junior Heather Bartolo (Derry, N.H.) collected two hits and scored two runs.  Sophomore Beth Moretti (Woonsocket, R.I.) was the losing pitcher, coming on in relief of starter Kat Roland (Norton, Mass.)

            PSU junior Courtney MacFarland (Hampstead, N.H.) and Bowdoin sophomore Julia Jacobs (Ridgewood, N.J.) locked up in a pitchers' duel in the nightcap, both tossing seven scoreless innings. Jacobs finished with 15 strikeouts for the Polar Bears, who pushed across the winning run in the bottom of the eighth inning.  MacFarland was the tough-luck losing pitcher in her season debut.

            PSU managed just two hits against Jacobs, singles by Romano and sophomore Kay LaBrie (Somersworth, N.H.)

            The Panthers will be right back into action Monday with a pair of games in Florida, meeting Worcester State College at 1:00 p.m. and Lasell College at 3:00 p.m.

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