When and Where: February 18, 2018 – Myrtle Beach, S.C. (Ned Donkle Complex)
Game One Score: Southern New Hampshire Univeristy 5, Concord University 0
Game Two Score: Southern New Hampshire University 6, Lock Haven University 3
Records: SNHU 6-0, CU 0-3, LHU 1-5
Sophomore Maddy Barone (Halifax, Mass.) hurled a three-hit shutout and junior Erin Garczynski (Norwood, Mass.) collected four hits on Sunday to lead the Southern New Hampshire University softball team to a doubleheader sweep of Concord University and Lock Haven University. The Penmen, who move to 6-0 for the first time in program history, blanked the Mountain Lions, 5-0, in game one before topping the Bald Eagles in the finale, 6-3.
Barone fired her second shutout in as many outings on Sunday, as she fanned five and walked five in seven innings of work. After working around a pair of first inning singles and allowing a pair of baserunners to reach in the third, Barone was perfect the rest of the way against Concord.
Southern New Hampshire wasted little time in providing Barone with all the offense she would need, as the Penmen put up a pair of runs in the bottom of the first on just one hit. Garczynski reached on an error before a fielder's choice off the bat of senior Sarah Lavallee (Candia, N.H.) loaded the bases for freshman Shay Sauvageau (Griswold, Conn.) with one away. Sauvageau reached on a fielder's choice of her own that resulted in senior Brittany Perdigao (Stoughton, Mass.) crossing the plate and the defense unable to record an out. Freshman Emily Critch (Halifax, Mass.) followed with a sacrifice fly to right that plated Garczynski, and SNHU carried a 2-0 cushion into the second.
Barone worked out of the only jam she faced in the top half of the third, as Concord worked a leadoff walk before connecting on a double to put runners on second and third with nobody out. Barone locked in and didn't allow a ball to leave the infield on the ensuing three batters, as she sandwiched a strikeout between a pair of popups to maintain the two-run edge.
The score remained unchanged into the home half of the sixth when Southern New Hampshire put the game away with a three-run frame. After Garczynski led off with a base hit, Lavallee crushed a two-run bomb to make it 4-0. Critch singled two batters later before sophomore Gabriella Vachon (Newton, Mass.) worked a walk and freshman Jackie Gavin (Laconia, N.H.) loaded the bases with a base knock. Two batters later, Wade reached on an error that allowed Vachon to cross with the game's final run.
Game two saw the Penmen fall behind early before rallying for six unanswered runs in the 6-3 triumph over Lock Haven. After the Bald Eagles pushed across the game's first run in the bottom of the second on an RBI ground out, Southern New Hampshire tacked on two runs in the ensuing half inning to take a lead it would never relinquish. Senior Katie Horiuchi (Livingston, N.J.) delivered the crucial hit of the inning, as she tagged a two-out, two-run triple to right that drove in Vachon and Critch to make it 2-1.
The score remained the same into the fifth before Lavallee blew the game open with one swing of the bat. Wade led off the frame with a walk before back-to-back singles by Perdigao and Garczynski loaded the bases. Lavallee stepped in a crushed a grand slam for her second homer of the day to balloon the lead to five entering the bottom of the fifth.
Lavallee, who had allowed just a single run on two hits through the first five innings, worked around a pair of base hits in the bottom of the sixth with the benefit of an inning-ending double play before surrendering two runs in the seventh. After fanning the first two batters of the frame, Lock Haven connected on three consecutive singles to plate two runs. With the tying run in the on-deck circle, Lavallee closed out the game with her fourth strikeout of the day to close out the weekend with a 4-0 record.
- Southern New Hampshire is off to its best start in program history at 6-0. The Penmen outscored their competition by a 35-11 margin in Myrtle Beach, and SNHU pitching held the opposition to just a .199 average.
- The Penmen rapped out 15 hits in the doubleheader, including three extra-base hits. Southern New Hampshire also worked six walks while its pitching staff surrendered just one while fanning nine.
- Barone's five strikeout performance in game one ups her season total to 19 in 20 innings of work. She also lowered her ERA to 1.05 after her second shutout in three starts.
Southern New Hampshire is idle until March 9 when it heads to Clermont, Florida for the PFX Spring Games at the National Training Complex. The Penmen will take on Le Moyne College in a non-conference doubleheader beginning at 9 a.m.
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