CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – MIT scored in the bottom of the eighth inning of game one to help secure a double-header split with WPI in New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) softball action on Saturday afternoon at Briggs Field. The visiting Engineers would win the second game, 16-0, to improve to 12-13 overall and 3-7 in conference play. With the split, MIT is now 7-15 and stand at 3-9 in the NEWMAC.
In the eighth inning of a scoreless tie, Maia Bageant beat the throw home on Chelsea Ostrander’s squeeze bunt to give the host Engineers the 1-0 win. Anna Teruya pitched eight scoreless innings for the Cardinal and Gray, allowing just five hits, to earn her second win of the season.
Bageant started the inning on second base and moved to third on a sacrifice bunt by Emily Creedon. Ostrander then laid another bunt down the third base line but Bageant broke for home quickly and got in under the throw to the plate to score the game’s only run.
WPI had a chance to push a run across in the top half of the eighth but Teruya was backed up by strong infield defense. Emily Hartzell moved to third after a sacrifice by the leadoff hitter, Kelly Johnson. Kim Martilla then hit a shot to short, but Trinity Leonard made a heads up throw home to keep Hartzell on third. The next batter, Meg Foley, again grounded to Leonard, but this time Hartzell was running all the way and the shortstop’s throw was just in time to record the second out of the inning at the plate. Teruya then got Courtney Rosales to foul out, ending the threat.
The visiting Engineers had a few chances to score early on but were unable to push anyone across. Johnson hit a one-out triple in the third inning, but was stranded after an infield fly and ground-out to second. In the fifth, Johnson and Allie Roche had back-to-back two-out base-hits but Teruya induced a soft line-out to second to get out of the jam.
WPI starter Erin Flaherty set down the first nine Tech batters before Jessica Oleinik ended the streak with a lead-off single in the fourth. Lily Keung moved Oleinik into scoring position with a sacrifice but Teruya and Keri Dixon flied out to end the inning.
The home-standing Engineers also had a chance to end the game in the seventh, as Leonard earned a one-out walk. However, Jenny Li struck out and pinch-runner Leah Alpert was caught stealing, sending the game into extras.
The WPI bats wasted little time getting on track in the second game, as the visitors scored three runs in the first inning before opening the game up with five in the second and eight in the third while batting around the lineup in each frame. Johnson led off with a base-hit and came home on Martilla’s RBI-double. Martilla would score later in the inning on an infield single by Katherine Fitton. A fielding miscue and a couple of wild pitches would lead to a third run for the Engineers from Worcester.
In the second, Martilla picked up a couple more RBI with a bases-loaded, ground rule double. Two straight walks by Olivia Gierlich would bring in another run. Oleinik would then allow a pair of inherited runners to score in relief of Gierlich thanks to a wild pitch and a run scoring ground-out.
After a strike out to start the third, seven straight WPI batters would reach base, all of whom would cross the plate, in the midst of an eight-run third that would double the visitors’ lead. Fitton picked up a pair of RBI on a bases-loaded double and Roche drove in a pair with a two-out triple.
Lily Keung had the only hit of the game for MIT, a one-out, infield single in the fourth, breaking up Allie Hardy’s no-hit bid.
Fitton finished the game two-for-three with a game-high four RBI. Martilla was three-for-four to go with three RBI and three runs scored. Hardy pitched the five-inning shut-out, facing just one batter above the minimum while striking out two, as WPI earned its first road win of the season in nine tries.
MIT will be back in action tomorrow, April 11, with a home twinbill against Wheaton at 12:00 p.m., in a make-up of Friday afternoon’s rainout. WPI will host cross-town rival, Clark, on Sunday in a doubleheader beginning at 1:00 p.m.