Panthers fall to two-time defending national champions
CLERMONT, Fla. – The Plymouth State University softball team had its hands full Monday in a pair of games against strong New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) teams, including the two-time defending national champions.
The Panthers put forth their best effort but fell to the two-time champion Tufts University in the first game, 8-0 in six innings, and then were defeated by a strong Bowdoin College team, 9-3. Tufts, which finished 47-4 last season, moves to 5-0 this spring and Bowdoin, which was 24-14 last year, is now 7-3. Playing in just their second doubleheader of the season, the Panthers fall to 0-4.
Senior Allyson Fournier tossed a one-hit shutout and sophomore Cassie Ruscz went 2-for-4 with three rbis to lift Tufts over Plymouth State in six innings. Fournier struck out 13 and walked one. The only hit she allowed was a lead-off single by freshman Kim Leiter (Manchester, N.H.) in the sixth inning. She's now allowed just two hits and struck out 44 in 18.2 spring-trip innings.
Freshman Jessica Pietersen (Norton, Mass.) took the loss for Plymouth State. She allowed six runs in five innings, walked one and struck out one.
PSU trailed just 2-0 after three innings, allowing solo runs in the second and third frames. The Jumbos pulled away with two runs in each of the next three innings.
Bowdoin struck for five unearned runs in the first inning of the second game, capped by a two-run home run by Lauren O'Shea. The Panthers came back with three runs on five hits over the next seven innings but couldn't recover.
Sophomore Katie Kennard (Concord, N.H.) had a strong day at the plate for PSU with three hits, including a triple and an RBI. PSU put together a two-run rally in the sixth inning, loading the bases with two outs on two walks and an error to set up RBI singles by Leiter and Kennard.
PSU plays two more games Tuesday against Utica College and The College of New Jersey, beginning at 9:00 a.m.
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