Wesleyan nips softball in both ends of non-league doubleheader

Mary Collette and the Bates softball team dropped both ends of a doubleheader by one run Saturday at Wesleyan University on April 14, 2018. (File photo by Phyllis Graber Jensen/Bates College)

MIDDLETOWN, Conn. -- The Bates softball team dropped both ends of a doubleheader by one run Saturday at Wesleyan University, falling 1-0 in Game 1 and 3-2 in Game 2.

The host Cardinals rose to 10-12 with the wins, which do not count in NESCAC standings, with Wesleyan in the NESCAC West Division and Bates in the East Division.

The Bobcats (11-10) host a non-conference doubleheader against UMaine-Farmington on Tuesday beginning at 3pm.

Game 1 Recap

Wesleyan senior Julie McDonald earned the complete-game win, striking out nine batters, and scoring the game-winning run in the fourth.

McDonald retired five consecutive batters to start the game and recorded 1-2-3 innings in the first, fourth and sixth.

In the bottom of the fourth, McDonald led off with a walk, and Danielle Rinaldi tallied an infield single to shortstop. With senior captain Reilly Wieners at the plate, McDonald stole third, and then crossed home with the game-winning run on a throwing error.

In the top of the seventh, the Bobcats tried to rally, as senior Tori Fitzgerald (Holliston, Mass.) led off with a single up the middle. McDonald struck out Bates sophomore starting pitcher Kirsten Pelletier (Sidney, Maine) looking, and then Maddie Ikeda turned a double play on an ground ball to clinch the game.

Pelletier allowed only one run on five hits in six innings of work. Freshman Marina Williams went 2-for-3 for Wesleyan with a pair of singles, as each team finished with five hits. Wesleyan did not make any mistakes in the field, and Bates was charged with one error, as both teams stranded six runners on the base path.

Game 2 Recap

Wesleyan rallied back from a 2-1 hole with two runs in the sixth to claim a 3-2 win. Rinaldi earned her fourth win of the year, going the distance, while striking out six batters, walking two, and allowing a pair of runs. She also went 2-for-3 at the dish with an RBI and a run.

The Cardinals entered the bottom of the sixth facing a 2-1 deficit, but McDonald drove a single to right to lead off, Rinaldi beat out a bunt for a base hit, and then Wieners tallied a single to shortstop, loading the bases with no outs. Williams then reached first on an error at second base, as the ball found its way into the outfield, allowing McDonald to score the game-tying run and Rinaldi to tally the go-ahead mark during a 3-2 triumph.

Bates opened the scoring in the top of the first on a one-out RBI single down the right-field line by sophomore Julia Panepinto (Buffalo, N.Y.), allowing first-year Caroline Bass (Newton, Mass.) to score. Rinaldi evened the game at 1-1 in the bottom of the inning for the hosts on a bunt single, which plated junior Olivia Gorman, who led off the inning with a single down the left-field line.

Pelletier delivered a clutch two-out RBI single up the middle for the Bobcats in the fifth, bringing home junior Andrea Russo (Cheshire, Conn.) with the Bobcats' second run of the game.

Pelletier was tagged with the loss, as she pitched in the sixth and gave up two runs on three hits. Freshman Payton Buxton pitched well in a starting role for Bates, giving up no earned runs on four hits and no walks in five innings, while striking out two.

Bass, Russo and Panepinto collected two hits apiece in the game.