Hebert, Jackson power Panthers past Pilgrims
PLYMOUTH, N.H. – Juniors Sam Hebert (Manchester, N.H./Memorial) and Bekah Jackson (Nashua, N.H.) combined for five extra-base hits and eight runs batted in Sunday afternoon as Plymouth State University swept a non-conference softball doubleheader from New England College at D&M Park.
PSU won the opener, 5-2, as Hebert and Jackson had two hits apiece, Hebert with a double and two RBI and Jackson with a triple and one RBI. Hebert added a pair of doubles and an RBI in a 10-2, five-inning Panther win in the nightcap, with Jackson belting a grand slam for her sixth home run of the season.
The Panthers have won five of their last six games to improve to 18-11 overall, while the Pilgrims had a three-game win streak stopped and dipped to 10-14.
Freshman Kiley Williams (Salem, Utah) led the Pilgrims with three hits on the day. Classmate Brittney Distante (Guilford, Conn.) had two hits in the nightcap, including a double and her first home run of the season.
NEC jumped on top in the first inning of the opener, as freshman Jessica Allen (East Patchogue, N.Y.) brought home a run with a sacrifice fly. The Panthers came back to take the lead with a four-run third inning. Three straight singles to open the frame set the table, and junior Taylor Mancini (Gansevoort, N.Y.) drilled a two-run single to right and Hebert followed with a two-run double to right.
The teams traded runs in the sixth inning to close out the scoring. Junior Alyssa Krause (Northfield, N.H.) knocked in a run for NEC with a sacrifice bunt, and Jackson answered for PSU with an RBI triple.
Freshman Vanessa Przybylo (Queensbury, N.Y.) earned the win for PSU with a complete-game effort, allowing just one earned run on three hits and a walk, striking out four.
PSU took control of the nightcap with a five-run second inning. Hebert doubled to lead off the inning, and she came around to score on an RBI single by sophomore Sam Madore (Bristol, Conn.) Jackson capped the rally, clearing the bases with a grand slam to center field. The Panthers tacked on one run in the third inning on an RBI double by Hebert, and two more in the fourth on a two-run single to left by sophomore Whitney Roberts (Chocorua, N.H.)
The Pilgrims broke through in the fifth inning when senior Alyssa Hoot (Waterville, Ohio) doubled to right center to lead off, and Distante cracked a home run over the left field fence. PSU put the game away in the bottom half of the inning on a two-run double to right center by junior Shannon Murphy (Chester, N.H./Pinkerton).
Sophomore Cynthia Barata (New Fairfield, Conn.) recorded her first win of the season for PSU, pitching four innings and allowing two runs on five hits. Senior Ali Keith (Northfield, N.H.) came on to pitch the fifth inning to close out the win.
PSU returns to Little East Conference action Tuesday at D&M Park with a 3:30 p.m. doubleheader against the University of Southern Maine. NEC resumes North Atlantic Conference action Tuesday at home with a 3:00 p.m. twin bill against Johnson State College.
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