Panthers battle back after early deficit; Moylan strong in the circle
CLERMONT, Fla. – For the second straight day the Plymouth State University softball team went nine innings, but this time they were on the short end of a 5-4 setback to Bethany (W.V.) College in a non-conference game at Legends Field on Saturday morning.
PSU (1-2), which had topped Westfield State in nine innings on Friday, came back from three runs down to tie the game at three-apiece in the fifth inning. After both teams plated a single run in the eighth, the Bison (6-3) added a single run in the ninth and the Panthers were unable to answer in the bottom half of the inning.
Bethany jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the top of the first. After the first two runners reached base, sophomore Kayla Dinsmore (Beavercreek, Ohio) ripped a triple to right field to score them both. The Bison looked poised to add more, but with runners on the corners and nobody out junior Kayla Mathieu (Fairfax, Vt.) got out of the jam with an infield grounder, a huge strikeout and a foul out to the catcher.
The Bison added another run in the top of the second. Bethany opening the inning with three straight singles and following a lineout, Dinsmore lofted a sacrifice fly to right to make it 3-0. After a base hit, Mathieu stranded three base runners to escape further trouble.
Plymouth State answered with two runs in the bottom of the fourth. Senior Nina Murray (Saugus, Mass.) and juniors Cassidy Emerson (Concord, N.H.) and Ashley Deyo (Dover, N.H.) started the rally with three straight singles. The Bison cut Murray down at home on an infield groundball, but junior Mel Goss (Templeton, Mass.) knocked in one run with a sac fly to right and senior Taylor Wood (Londonderry, N.H.) drove in a run with a single through the right side.
The Panthers tied the game in the fifth when Murray drove in sophomore Nora Butler (Tewksbury, Mass.) on a fielding error by Bethany. PSU had runners at second and third with nobody out, but were unable to scratch another run across.
Using the tiebreaker rules in the eighth inning, Bethany used an infield groundout to advance the runner to third with one out, then sophomore Erica Amoroso (Belle Vernon, Pa.) singled up the middle to make it 4-3. Plymouth answered in the bottom half. With Murray on second, Emerson sacrificed her to third and Deyo followed with a single to left to knot the game at 4-4.
Bethany used an infield groundout and a sacrifice fly to plate its fifth run in the top of the ninth. In the bottom half, sophomore Haley Birch (Salem, Conn.) moved pinch runner Hannah Seidner (Pembroke, N.H.) to third with a sacrifice, but the Panthers were unable to get her home.
Moylan pitched 5.2 innings in relief of Mathieu, giving up just three hits. Sophomore Caitlyn Miller (Lee, N.H.) took over with two down in the eighth and was saddled with the loss to drop to 1-1. Senior Cassie Weiss (Taylorstown, Pa.) pitched two innings to pick up the win for the Bison, improving to 3-2 on the year.
Deyo was the only Panther to reach base multiple times with a pair of singles.
Plymouth State faces #7 Amherst College in its second game of the day.
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