Butler's walk-off hit wins game two
KISSIMMEE, Fla. – Junior Nora Butler (Tewksbury, Mass.) drove in the game-winning run in the bottom of the seventh inning to lead Plymouth State University to a win over Swarthmore College in the Panthers' second of two wins at Fortune Field at THE Spring Games on Thursday. PSU won its first game of the day 7-5 over Gettysburg College.
Plymouth State took an early lead against Gettysburg, then held on late for the win. Freshman Madison Harris (Randolph, Mass.) got the Panthers started when she smacked a bases loaded, two-run single to center and PSU stole another run on a Bullets' error. Back-to-back RBI doubles in the fifth and a run-scoring single in the sixth pushed the lead to 6-1, but Gettysburg rallied for three runs in the bottom of the inning. The Panthers used some small-ball to tack on a run in the seventh. Gettysburg tried to rally with two down in the bottom of the frame, but the Panthers were able to hold on for the win.
Swarthmore took a 1-0 lead in the top of the first, but senior Kayla Nester (Fairfax, Vt.) put the Panthers up with a two-run double in the second. The Garnet pulled even on a sacrifice fly in the top of the third and neither team would score until the bottom of the seventh. With runners on the corners and one away, Butler executed the perfect bunt and pinch runner Jordyn Babin (New Ipswich, N.H.) scored ahead of the throw for the walk off win.
With the sweep Plymouth State wraps up its Florida trip with a 5-7 mark. Gettysburg drops to 5-4, while Swarthmore stands at 6-3.
The Final Score:
Plymouth State 7, Gettysburg 5
Plymouth State 3, Swarthmore 2
Plymouth State (5-7)
How it Happened (Gettysburg):
* The Panthers went to work in the top of the third as the first four batters all reached base. Seniors Debra Morrill (Concord, N.H.) and Cassidy Emerson (Concord, N.H.) both walked, and classmate Ashley Deyo (Dover, N.H.) walked to load the bases before Harris drove in two runs with her base hit to center. The Panthers stole another run on a Bullets' error when pinch runner Mina Shaw (Mars, Pa.) stole second, allowing Deyo to trot home for a 3-0 lead.
* Gettysburg got one run back in the bottom of the inning on a two-out RBI single.
* PSU pushed the lead to 5-1 with three straight two-out hits in the fifth. With two down, Harris started things with a single through the right side and senior Mel Goss (Templeton, Mass.) drove her in with a booming double to center. Goss game around to score one batter later on a double from sophomore Sam Cushing (Amherst, N.H.).
* An error, stolen base and two-out single from Emerson gave Plymouth State a 6-1 lead in the sixth.
* Starter Caitlyn Miller (Lee, N.H.) gave way to senior Kayla Mathieu (Fairfax, Vt.) in the bottom of the inning. A bunt single, PSU error and single cut the lead to 6-2 and after a fly out the Bullets plated a pair of unearned runs on a two-out single but Mathieu struck out the next batter to avoid further trouble.
* Harris walked to open the seventh and Goss followed with a single. A bunt moved both runners into scoring position and junior Jen Landers (Berlin, N.H.) executed a perfect bunt to score PSU's seventh run.
* Mathieu got two quick outs in the bottom half before a walk and back-to-back singles cut the lead to 7-5, but with the go-ahead run at the plate, Mathieu induced a groundball to short to close out the game.
Inside the Numbers (Gettysburg):
* Emerson had a season high with three hits, while Harris (single, single, walk) also reached base three times.
* Goss also had a multi-hit game with a single and double, and currently has a .367/.424/.800 slash line.
* Miller improved to 3-3 after giving up just one run over her five innings. Mathieu allowed four, though just two were earned, while striking out three over the final two innings.
How it Happened (Swarthmore):
* The Garnet scored an unearned run in the first to take a 1-0 lead.
* PSU rallied in the second. Butler singled and senior Lindsey Hall (Midlothian, Va.) reached on an error. Both runners moved up on a sacrifice setting up Nester's two-run double to right.
* Swarthmore came right back to tie the game in the third after a leadoff double, stolen base and sac fly.
* Plymouth State put two runners on base in the third, fourth and fifth innings but wasn't able to push the go-ahead run across.
* Mathieu worked out of a bases loaded, one out jam in the top of the fifth. Nester collected a passed ball and tagged out the lead runner before she could cross the plate, and a foul out to left ended the inning.
* Miller came on to pitch the sixth and seventh. The Garnet threatened in the seventh. With two down, back-to-back singles and an error loaded the bases, but Miller induced a comebacker to end the threat.
* Harris reached on an error to open the bottom of the inning. She was erased on a fielder's choice, but Deyo poked a pinch hit single through the right side to move Babin to third and Butler won the game with her bunt single.
Inside the Numbers (Swarthmore):
* Freshman Jillian Aziz (Plaistow, N.H.) allowed two runs (one earned) over 4.1 innings. Mathieu closed out the fifth and Miller (4-3) picked up the win after throwing the final two scoreless innings.
* Butler was the only Panther to record a multi-hit game, finishing 3-for-4, while Cushing reached base twice (single, walk).
* PSU matched a season high with 11 base hits.
* The Panthers close out their spring trip riding a three-game win streak.
* Plymouth State opens Little East Conference (LEC) play a week from Saturday (Mar. 23) with a doubleheader at the University of Massachusetts Boston. Games are set for 1:00 p.m. and 3:00 p.m.
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