Springfield now stands 11-16 on the season, 6-5 in the NEWMAC.? Wellesley is now 14-11, 8-3 in conference play.
Wellesley got on the board first in game one in the bottom of the third, when Elora Daniele (Belle Mead, NJ) beat out a bunt for a single. Amanda Tai (Melrose, MA) followed with a double off the fence in leftcenter to score Daniele from first and give the Blue a 1-0 lead.
Springfield answered in the top of the fourth, as Aimee Casella (Southington, CT) reached on an error and advanced to second on the play. Michelle Wlosek (Nutley, NJ) promptly drove a shot over the leftfield fence to give the Pride a 2-1 edge.
In the bottom of the fourth, Wellesley used singles from Megan Wood (Jacksonville, FL) and Ali Davis (Glen Ellyn, IL) to put runners on first and second with one out. Alex Warren followed with a double off the fence in right to drive in Wood with the tying run. With runners on second and third and only one out, the Blue threatened to take the lead, but the Pride's Samantha Rhodes (Mendon, MA) retired the next two batters to end the rally.
The Blue loaded the bases in the bottom of the fifth after Daniele led off with a single, Megan Townsend (Saline, MI) was hit by a pitch and Jessie Haladyna (St. John’s, FL) reached on a Pride error. The following pitch, Wood blooped a single into left field to score Daniele and put the Blue up, 3-2. With the bases still loaded and only one out, Rhodes got the next to Wellesley batters to pop out to end the inning.
Springfield responded in the top of the sixth inning as Amanda Lyons (Eastchester, NY) led off with a double. Cassella then reached on a fielder’s choice and both players advanced on a wild pitch. With first base open, the Blue elected to intentionally walk Springfield’s Wlosek, but Bryn Worrilow (North Babylon, NY) picked up a single that was just out of the reach of the Wellesley third baseman to tie the score at 3-3. Still with no outs and the bases loaded, Blue starter Barbarajean Grundlock (Blackwood, NJ) sat down the next three Pride players in order, getting three straight strikeouts to preserve the tie.
After a scoreless seventh inning for both team, the tiebreaker rule was enforced in the eighth. With Worrilow placed on second base to begin the Springfield half of the inning, Grundlock used a pop out and two more strikeouts to send the game into the bottom of the eighth, 3-3.
Davis was placed on second to start the Wellesley at-bat, and Warren laid down a sacrifice bunt to advance her to third base. After designated player Sarah Sherburne (Mill Valley, CA) was injured during the next at-bat, pinch-hitter Shawna McCreadie (Des Plaines, IL) stepped in with an inherited 1-2 count. The junior then knocked a single into right field that scored Davis and gave the Blue a 4-3 victory.
Springfield’s offense was limited to five hits with Wlosek picking up two RBI and Worrilow adding the third. Pitching for the Pride, Rhodes threw seven and a third, allowing four runs (three earned) on 10 hits.
For Wellesley, Daniele was 3-3 with two runs scored and Wood went 2-4 with an RBI. In the circle, Grundlock had a solid outing, throwing eight innings, scattering five hits and allowing just two earned runs. The junior also racked up 13 strikeouts in the win, tying her career best.
In game two, Springfield jumped to an early lead, when Lyons singled with one out in the first and advanced to second on Wlosek's walk. Worrilow's grounder to deep second led to a Wellesley miscue, and Lyons scampered home from second to give the Pride a 1-0 lead.
For the next six innings the score remained unchanged, as both pitchers -- Grundlock for Wellesley and Katie Anderson (Andover, MA) -- took charge of the game. But after six scoreless innings, the Pride tallied one more run in the top of the seventh, when Lyons walked, advanced to second on a wild pitch, moved to third on a passed ball, then scored on Worrilow's sacrifice fly to deep left, extending Springfield's lead to 2-0.
Wellesley rallied in the bottom of the seventh, when Warren tripled to right center with one out and scored on Daniele's single to left. But Anderson coaxed Tai to pop to shortstop, ending the game and preserving the win.
For the Pride, Lyons, Worrilow, Amanda Novak (Cos Cob, CT), Laura Riccio (Bristol, CT), and Shanda Kogut (Preston, CT) had one hit each, with Lyons scoring both runs. Anderson was solid in the circle, allowing no runs on five hits. She struck out five and walked only two in the win.
For Wellesley, Davis was 2-for-3 and Warren was 1-for-2 with a triple, scoring the Blue's only run.? Grundlock took the loss, despite a solid effort from the rubber, giving up two runs (neither earned) while allowing only five hits and fanning 10.
Springfield takes the field again on Tuesday, April 14, when they host Clark University at 4:00 p.m.