Softball Sweeps Crucial Weekend Series Against Middlebury
Issue   |   Tue, 04/10/2018 - 19:51
Photos courtesy of Clarus Studios
Ace Gina Pagan ’18 shut out Middlebury in the second game of the series sweep, striking out 11 batters, walking only one and allowing four hits.

This past weekend, Amherst softball played its first home series of the year, taking on NESCAC rival Middlebury.

In the first game, Amherst jumped out to a quick 5-0 lead, thanks to a big first inning from the offense.

Middlebury battled back, scoring two runs in both the fourth and fifth innings to cut the lead to 5-4.

The Mammoths, however, tacked on some insurance runs, with three in the bottom of the fifth and another in the bottom of the sixth to secure a 9-4 victory.

The Amherst offense had a huge day at the plate, racking up 12 hits and scoring nine runs.
Andrea Sanders ’20 and Sammy Salustri ’19 provided a big spark at the top of the lineup, each tallying two hits and scoring a run.

Kyra Naftel ’19 and Ally Kido ’18 also had multi-hit outings as the Mammoths rolled in game one of the series.

The second game of the series was a much lower scoring affair. Amherst relied on dominant pitching and solid defense to keep Middlebury off the board.

Tied until the fifth inning, Salustri opened the scoring with an RBI-triple.

She was brought around to score by a single from Kyra Naftel ’19, before the Mammoths tacked on another run as Alyson Plaman ’21 hit a sacrifice-fly to left field.

Gina Pagan ’18 put on a masterful performance on the mound, throwing a complete-game shutout, walking just one batter and allowing four hits.

Pagan kept Middlebury guessing at the plate all day, as she racked up 11 strikeouts.

In the final contest of the three-game series, Amherst topped Middlebury by a score of 7-2 and was dominant both offensively and defensively.

The Mammoths kicked off the scoring in the bottom of the first inning, as Audrey Hansen ’21 hit an RBI-single. Amherst added three more in the second inning to extend its lead to 4-0.

Middlebury got two back in the third, but Amherst was sure to keep its foot on the pedal, adding two more of its own in the bottom of the third.

The Mammoths added one more run in the fifth to close out the scoring.

Sanders led the charge with a three-hit, three-RBI game from the leadoff spot.

Hansen, Naftel, and Plaman all posted multi-hit performances that contributed to Amherst’s big day at the plate. Lorena Ukanwa ’19 threw six dominant innings, allowing two runs (none earned) on six hits and three walks in addition to recording 13 strikeouts on the day.

Emily Lachtara ’21 came in to shut the door, throwing a scoreless inning in the seventh.