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SOFTBALL TAKES FIRST GNAC WIN OVER SIMMONS BUT SPLITS THE DAY

SOFTBALL TAKES FIRST GNAC WIN OVER SIMMONS BUT SPLITS THE DAY

BOSTON. MASS. - Junior Olivia Burgos led the offense of the Saints, going 4-7 on the day as Emmanuel College took the first game of the day against Great Northeast Athletic Conference and College of the Fenway rival Simmons College, 6-4, before falling to the Sharks in game two, 2-4. 

In the first game of the day, junior pitcher Megan Kieselback (3-3) earned the complete game victory for Emmanuel, yielding four runs (three earned) on five hits and a walk, while fanning five batters. Sophomore Alex Soqui (Acushnet, Mass.) (1-4) took the loss for the Sharks, allowing four runs (one earned) on six hits and a base on balls and three strikeouts in five and a third innings of work.

The Sharks scored two in the fourth and added a single run in the fifth to take a 3-0 lead heading into Emmanuel's top half of the sixth of game one. The Saints took advantage of three Simmons errors to rally for three runs in the frame to knot the score at 3-3. Sophomore center fielder Sarah Hoisl (West Hartford, Conn.) led off the sixth with a single and later scored on a muffed throw to put the Saints on the board. Burgos reached on an error on a sacrifice bunt and cut the deficit to a run when she scored on a ground out from junior catcher Casey Sheehan (Medway, Mass.). Emmanuel pulled even in the inning when first year left fielder Megan Long (Greenville, R.I.) reached on an error and later scored on a single to center from junior starting pitcher Megan Kieselback (Wethersfield, Conn.). Hennessey kept it a tie game after cutting down a runner trying to score on the same play.

Simmons reclaimed the lead at 4-3 with a run in the bottom of the frame when Vann tripled to right center and scampered home on a sacrifice fly to center from Hennessey. The Sharks looked to close the door in the seventh, but the Saints scored three times in their final at-bat to provide the winning margin. Emmanuel put runners on second and third with the benefit of a leadoff single from first year pinch-hitter Kaitlin Bouchard (South Portland, Maine) and a passed ball. The string of events set up Burgos for a squeeze bunt that resulted in her reaching first when the throw home was not in time to get pinch runner Meaghan Price (Corning, N.Y.) from scoring the go-ahead run. Long followed with an RBI-single and Sheehan plated another run with a ground out to give the Saints a two-run lead they would not relinquish.

In game 2, Burgos (2-1) suffered the loss for the Saints, allowing two runs on seven hits and three walks to go with a strikeout in four innings of work.

Simmons took a 2-0 lead on a two-run single from Hennessey in the fourth and added a run in the fifth when first year shortstop Marissa Santoro (Franklin, Mass.) singled and later scored on a two-out base hit from Del Vacchio to give the home team a 3-0 lead.

Emmanuel prevented the shutout with a pair of runs in the seventh to give it five runs in the seventh inning for the day after scoring three times in the opener's seventh frame. Junior first base Ashley Skey (Brookline, N.H.) opened the inning with a leadoff single to left before giving way to sophomore pinch runner Yuleska Ramirez-Tejeda (South Boston, Mass.). Ramirez-Tejeda stole second and later scored from third on a throwing miscue to second on a successful steal attempt from first year second base Meagan Price, who had previously singled. Price later scored on a single off the bat of Esakoff to cut the deficit to 4-2, before Nelson retired the final two batters to strand Esakoff on first and give Simmons the nightcap.

Simmons returns to the diamond tomorrow when it travels to take on Albertus Magnus College in a GNAC twinbill at 12:00 p.m., while the Saints host Norwich University at Clemente Field in Boston at 12:00 p.m.