LOWELL, Mass.- The Merrimack softball team earned a split against UMass Lowell to kick off Northeast-10 Conference play. The Warriors moved to 6-9 overall and 1-1 in the league. The River Hawks go to 15-10 on the year and 1-3 in the conference.
Merrimack produced 12 runs on 12 hits in game one to claim a 12-1 victory over Lowell. Monique Gosselin (Lawrence, Mass.) led the Warriors with a 2-for-4 batting performance with four RBIs and one run scored.
Merrimack got the scoring started early in game one. Gosselin drove in Kristen LeMay (Shrewsbury, Mass.) and Tawny PalmierI (Peabody, Mass.) with a single through the right side of the infield in the top of the first. After Jaclyn Giovannini (Plano, Texas) singled to move Gosselin to third, Kara Melillo (North Andover, Mass.) blasted a three-run homer to put the Warriors up 5-0 in the first.
UMass Lowell put one run on the board in the bottom of the first frame as Krista Mackenzie led off with a triple and scored on a wild pitch.
In the top of the second inning, Jessica Fugazzotto (Newton, Mass.) began the frame with a single to left field. The rookie scored Merrimack's sixth run of the contest to restore the Warriors' five-run advantage, 6-1.
In the fifth inning, Ashley Perry (Winchendon, Mass.) plated Nicole LoPilato (Medford, Mass.) and Melillo to extend Merrimack's lead to 8-1. Keaira Monet Perry (Bellingham, Mass.) followed with an RBI single to center field to score Alex Gallant (Salem, N.H.), pushing the score to 9-1 in favor of the visitors.
Gosselin raked a two-out triple with the bases loaded in the fifth to lift the Warriors' lead to 11 runs, 12-1.
Kelli Jo Deardorff (Bedford, Mass.) hurled a five-inning complete game with four strikeouts in the game.
In game two, the River Hawks struck first with a run to break up a scoreless tie in the bottom of the third.
Lowell held on for the 1-0 victory to earn a split in the doubleheader.
Merrimack's two hits in the nightcap were a single by Giovannini in the fourth and a lead-off double by Melillo in the seventh.
Deardorff tossed two and a third innings in the pitcher's circle for the Warriors and was tagged with the loss. Alie Thomas (Bedford, N.H.) closed out the game with 3.2 innings worth of work, scattering two hits and fanning one batter.
The Warriors return home to host Saint Anselm in a Northeast-10 doubleheader Wednesday, April 6.