PSU Softball takes two from UMD in LEC opener

Galvin tosses shutout in opener to lead Panthers

            NORTH DARTMOUTH, Mass. – The Plymouth State University softball team opened Little East Conference play Saturday afternoon with a pair of victories, sweeping the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, 4-0 and 10-5, in a doubleheader at the UMD Athletic Complex.

            Junior Nora Galvin (Windham, N.H.) tossed a three-hit shutout for PSU in the opener, walking one and striking out eight. Classmate Sam Hebert (Manchester, N.H./Memorial) knocked in a pair of runs with a single and a sacrifice fly, and junior Jackie Digman (Burlington, Mass.) added an RBI double.

            Hebert and Digman drove in two runs each to lead the Panthers in the nightcap, while junior Bekah Jackson (Nashua, N.H.) scored four runs after reaching back on a double, triple and two walks. Senior Jenn Bove (Medford, Mass.) stole three bases and scored three runs and Taylor Mancini (Gansevoort, N.Y.) contributed a pair of hits, including an RBI double.

            PSU scored the only run it would need in the opener in the first inning when senior Calli DeGrace (Plymouth, N.H.) singled and later scored on Hebert's RBI hit. The Panthers extended the lead with solo runs in the fourth and fifth innings, Digman scoring on a passed ball in the fourth and doubling home a run in the fifth.  Jackson tripled and scored PSU's final run in the seventh inning, but the story was Galvin, who didn't allow a hit until the fourth inning and didn't allow a base runner past second base in the game.

            The Panthers scored twice in the first inning of the nightcap and exploded for five runs in the second to open up a 7-0 advantage.  Mancini drove in the first run in the five-run outburst, and Hebert capped the rally with a two-run single.  UMass Dartmouth responded with three runs in the bottom of the second, capped by a two-run triple by Emily Pontes.

            Digman delivered an RBI double for PSU in the fourth inning, and Jackson doubled home a run in the seventh and then scored on a wild pitch to wind up the scoring.

            Sophomore Whitney Roberts (Chocorua, N.H.) pitched the first four innings for PSU and recorded the win, allowing six hits and just two earned runs.  Sophomore Cynthia Barata (New Fairfield, Conn.) pitched shutout ball over the final three innings, allowing just four hits and no walks while striking out two to record her first save of the season.

            The Panthers, 8-7 overall and winners of six in a row, will be back in action Tuesday with a 3:30 p.m. non-conference doubleheader at Lesley University in Cambridge, Mass. 

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