April 6, 2007
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. - It was a tale of two games on Friday afternoon at Briggs Field, as WPI used a complete game three-hit shutout effort from senior pitcher Meghan Kelly to squeak past NEWMAC foe MIT, 2-0, in the day's first game, before busting out the big bats for a 10-5 triumph in the nightcap. WPI pushed its overall record to 11-6 and its conference ledger to 5-1 with the victories, while Tech fell to 1-13 and 0-6 with the pair of setbacks.
Kelly, who entered the day with a remarkable earned-run-average of 0.48, picked up seven strikeouts while walking none in her seven innings of work in the afternoon's first contest. The gem was her sixth complete game of the season - three of which have been shutouts - and it moved her record to 5-1 on the season.
Freshman Lauren Balek was nearly as impressive for MIT, going the distance while allowing just two hits and two unearned runs. She struck out three and walked four while dropping to 0-4 overall.
The first game was one of few chances, as each team struggled to put runners on base in frigid temperatures.
WPI threatened in the first, but sophomore Nicole Maglione was stranded at third base after leading off with a single, stealing second, then being bunted over. Balek induced a popup before fielding a come-backer herself to get out of the inning.
The visitors did push the eventual winning run across in the top of the second, however, as junior third basemen Nicole DeCampo walked, moved to second on error, then was sacrificed to third by freshman Amanda Matori before scoring on a passed ball.
WPI grabbed an insurance run in the top of the fourth, and it was DeCampo again who crossed the plate after walking to lead off the inning. She advanced to second on a passed ball, moved to third on a ground out, then scored on a fielding miscue to provide the final score line of 2-0.
MIT put a scare into its opposition in the bottom of the sixth, as consecutive two-out hits by junior Amanda Poteet and Balek put two runners in scoring position with two outs. However, Kelly forced a ground-out to second to end the threat.
The second half of the twinbill was quite a different story, as the bats came alive for both teams in an energetic encounter. Sophomore catcher Sara Migdal led the way for WPI, going 2-for-2 and driving in five runs while providing the highlight of the afternoon by smashing a monstrous grand-slam over the left field fence in the top of fourth.
Junior pitcher Leah Bogsted and freshman catcher Kasey Rowe were Tech's most consistent offensive contributors, as each notched two hits, while Poteet provided the power, driving in two runs with a double to right center in the fourth.
Following two scoreless innings to open the contest, each team exploded in the third frame. WPI put up a six-spot in the top of the inning, highlighted by a two-RBI triple by freshman Kelly Johnson, while MIT answered right back with four of its own in the bottom of the frame, as Poteet's two-RBI double was bolstered by an Amanda Jason RBI single.
Migdal's grand slam in the top of the fourth was a back-breaker for the Cardinal and Gray, as it stretched the lead to 10-4 so shortly after the team had cut the deficit to two.
MIT grabbed a consolation run in the bottom of the sixth when freshman Chelsea Ostrander picked up her first intercollegiate RBI with a run-scoring double.
Senior Jennifer Parker allowed four runs (none earned) in three innings and struck out two, while junior Heather Hassett was strong in relief, tossing four innings and allowing just one run while notching two strikeouts to pick up the win and move to 2-2.
Bogsted (1-5) went the distance for MIT and picked up eight strikeouts while scattering nine hits. Though she allowed ten runs, just three were earned.
Both Tech and WPI will return to action tomorrow afternoon in noon-time doubleheaders against NEWMAC opposition. MIT will travel to Coast Guard, while WPI will host Wheaton.