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PSU Softball extends winning streak to 12

            FITCHBURG, Mass. - The Plymouth State University softball team extended its winning streak to 12 games Wednesday afternoon, sweeping a non-conference doubleheader from Fitchburg State College, 7-3 and 2-1, at Coolidge Park.

            The Panthers got two more strong pitching performances from sophomore Kat Roland (Norton, Mass./Fontbonne Academy) and junior Courtney MacFarland (Derry, N.H.).  PSU improves its record to 12-2 overall, while Fitchburg State drops to 3-9.

            Roland had a two-hit shutout going with seven strikeouts and a 7-0 lead with two outs in the bottom of the seventh inning.  Fitchburg suddenly loaded the bases on an error, a walk and a batter hit by a pitch, and sophomore Lauren Cucinotta (Franklin, Mass.), the number nine hitter in the Falcons order, cleared the bases with a three-run triple.  Sophomore Beth Moretti (Woonsocket, R.I.) came on to pitch for PSU and got the final out, and Roland improved her record to 5-0.

            The Panthers had gotten three runs in the first inning on an RBI single by freshman Andrea Pydynkowski (Danvers, Mass.) and a two-run hit by sophomore Sammi Romano (Kingston, N.H.). They added three more runs in the fourth inning, two unearned, with freshman Melissa Caiazzo (Portland, Maine) contributing an RBI single and junior Heather Bartolo (Derry, N.H.) adding a sacrifice fly.  PSU scored its final run in the seventh inning on another RBI single by Pydynkowski.

            McFarland allowed only two hits and one run for PSU in the nightcap, retiring the last 12 batters she faced and 15 of the last 16.  The only run she surrendered came in the third inning when freshman Meghan Callahan (Chelmsford, Mass.) singled, stole second, went to third on an infield hit and scored on a sacrifice fly by sophomore Julie Robbio (Malden, Mass.)

            PSU came back to take the lead in the fifth inning.  Freshman Kortney Nedeau (Kennebunk, Maine) delivered a pinch hit RBI single, and junior Michelle Kelly (Hill, N.H.) came home on a wild pitch. That made it 2-1, and MacFarland did the rest, shutting down the Falcons to improve her record to 5-1.

            The Panthers get right back into action Thursday with a non-conference doubleheader at Salem State College (3:30 p.m.)

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