SPRINGFIELD, Mass.- The Merrimack softball team earned a pair of shutout victories over American International Sunday afternoon at Groff Field, prevailing 5-0 and 2-0. The Warriors elevate their overall record to 18-13 with a 13-5 mark in the Northeast-10 Conference. The Yellow Jackets fall to 14-18 on the year and 10-8 in the league.
Kristen LeMay (Shrewsbury, Mass.) went 4-for-7 from the dish to lead the way for Merrimack. Tawny Palmieri (Peabody, Mass.) and Keaira Monet Perry (Bellingham, Mass.) were responsible for all seven runs on the day. Palmieri plated four with three hits including a homer while Perry drove in three.
The Warriors got the scoring started early in the twin bill. Jamie Millett (Hudson, Mass.) raked Merrimack's first hit of the day, a single through the left side of the infield in the top of the first. Palmieri made the score 2-0 with one swing of the bat, blasting a two-run round-tripper.
In the third inning, LeMay and Millett each laced singles to lead off the frame. Monique Gosselin (Lawrence, Mass.) drew a one-out walk to load the bases. Perry cleared the bases with a double to right center to score all three and put the visitors ahead 5-0.
Kelli Jo Deardorff (Bedford, Mass.) hurled a complete game, pitching seven innings while allowing just two hits and one walk. The sophomore struck out six batters in game one.
Game two remained a scoreless tie until the top of the fifth frame. LeMay and Millett each singled to right field with one out. Palmieri knocked in both runners with a double to left center, giving Merrimack a 2-0 edge.
Alie Thomas (Bedford, N.H.) tossed seven innings in the pitcher's circle for the Warriors. Thomas scattered two hits while fanning a pair of batters.
"Our pitching and defense was excellent today in both games," said head coach Elaine Schwager. "We need to carry that momentum and level of intensity into the remainder of our games this season."
Merrimack wraps up the road swing April 20 as it travels to take on Stonehill.