Bats silenced as Panthers' season comes to an end
DARTMOUTH, Mass. – Junior Caitlyn Miller (Lee, N.H.) allowed just three hits and a first inning run, but the Plymouth State University offense was limited to two hits as the Panthers fell to Eastern Connecticut State University, 1-0, in game nine of the Little East Conference (LEC) softball tournament Saturday afternoon at UMD Softball Complex on the campus of the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth.
Miller surrendered her first earned run of the tournament as the Warriors manufactured a run in the bottom of the first, and the lone run would stand up. Both pitchers were in complete control throughout, as base runners and scoring opportunities were difficult to come by.
PSU closes its season with a 22-18 record, surpassing the 20-win threshold for the third straight year, and comes up just short in its bid for a third straight appearance in the championship game.
Eastern Connecticut (28-11) advances to the title game to face two-time defending champion University of Massachusetts Boston later today.
The Final Score:
Plymouth State 0, Eastern Connecticut 1
Plymouth State (22-18)
Eastern Connecticut (28-11)
How it Happened:
* The Warriors took advantage of a hit batter to score the game's only run in the bottom of the first. With one out, sophomore Alexis Tyrrell (Torrington, Conn.) was hit by a pitch, then stole second. Miller got the second out of the inning on a strikeout, but freshman Brooke Matyasovsky (Orange, Conn.) knocked a single into left center for the early lead.
* A walk and single gave Eastern Connecticut a pair of baserunners in the second, but a popup and foul out ended the threat.
* PSU got its first runner in the top of the third when junior Nora Butler (Tewksbury, Mass.) worked a leadoff walk. She was bunted to second, but sophomore pitcher Morgan Bolduk (Vernon, Conn.) retired the next two batters.
* Senior Ashley Deyo (Dover, N.H.) doubled with one down in the fourth. Freshman Madison Harris (Randolph, Mass.) followed with a grounder back up the middle, but Deyo was caught in a rundown for the second out and Harris was tagged out attempting to advance to second on the play.
* Eastern got a runner to third on a single, steal and error with two away in the bottom of the frame, but Miller induce an easy popup on the infield to keep it a one-run game.
* Bolduk retired the next eight Panthers' batters, until Harris singled to right with two out in the top of the seventh. The next batter grounded out on a comebacker to end the game.
Inside the Numbers:
* Miller went six innings and allowed just three singles and one run, but took the loss to drop to 14-9. Over 21.0 innings in the LEC Tournament she surrendered a total of 12 hits, struck out 11 and gave up just one earned run (0.33 ERA).
* Bolduk was equally overpowering, giving up just the Harris single and Deyo double while striking out four. She improves to 14-1 on the year.
* Deyo ends the season with team-highs of 48 hits, a .410 average, .474 on base percentage and .547 slugging percentage.
* Miller was among the tops in the LEC with 152.2 innings pitched and a 2.02 ERA, while striking out 4.22 batters per seven innings.
* Senior Debra Morrill (Concord, N.H.) led the Panthers with 24 runs scored while hitting at a .336 clip, while Harris paced the team with 29 RBI and matched senior Mel Goss (Templeton, Mass.) with a team-best four homers. Harris hit .340, while Goss slugged .518.
* Senior Kayla Mathieu (Fairfax, Vt.) capped her final season with a 3.24 ERA over 84.1 innings and an 8-6 mark, striking out 3.65 batters per seven.
* The loss marked the final games in the careers of PSU's eight seniors; Deyo, Mathieu, Morrill, Goss, Hannah Seidner (Pembroke, N.H.), Kayla Nester (Fairfax, Vt.), Cassidy Emerson (Concord, N.H.) and Lindsey Hall (Midlothian, Va.).
* PSU's season comes to an end.
* The Warriors will face UMass Boston for the LEC title. The Beacons will need to win back-to-back games over Eastern Connecticut to capture a third-straight championship.
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