LYNDHURST, NJ- The Merrimack softball team swapped wins with Felician Thursday afternoon to kick off a four-day, eight-game stretch. The Warriors prevailed in game one 6-1 before dropping a narrow 2-1 decision in game two. Merrimack progresses to 4-6 on the season while the Golden Falcons move to 2-20 overall.
Kelli Jo Deardorff (Bedford, MA) led the way with three RBIs on a pair of hits in the twinbill. Tawny Palmieri (Peabody, MA) collected three hits and registered a run scored and a stolen base. Jessica Fugazzotto (Newton, MA) scored three times and swiped three bases on the day. Lindsay Gibbs (Acton, MA) and Curran Hubbard (Laconia, NH) each chipped in with two base knocks.
In game one, Merrimack collected six hits and Alie Thomas (Bedford, NH) pitched a complete game with four strikeouts to earn her second win of the season.
The Warriors plated the game's first run in the top of the second inning. A sacrifice bunt by Ashley Perry (Winchendon, MA) allowed Hubbard to come home from third base to give Merrimack a 1-0 edge.
The visitors cushioned their lead with two runs in the third frame. After Fugazzotto stole second and advanced to third on a passed ball, Monique Gosselin (Lawrence, MA) walked to give the Warriors runners on the corners. As Gosselin stole second, Fugazzotto scampered home to double Merrimack's advantage to 2-0. Gosselin came around to score on a single to right by Hubbard to increase the Warriors' lead to 3-0.
Jenn Post (Orange, CT) and Palmieri raked back-to-back singles to lead off the fifth inning. Fugazzotto drove in Gabby Rivers, who pinch ran for Post, with a bunt single while also advancing Palmieri to third to add to Merrimack's 4-0 lead.
Deardorff cleared the bases with a two-out, two-run single to right to extend the Warriors margin to six.
Felician got on the board in the bottom of the seventh. Grace Keller plated Taylor Parker from second with a single up the middle.
In the nightcap, Merrimack claimed an early lead with a run in the top of the first frame. With runners on first and second, Deardorff laced an RBI single to right center to plate Fugazzotto to open the scoring.
The Golden Falcons responded with two runs in the home half of the inning to steal the lead. Ciera Clark tied the game with a triple right. Parker followed with a single up the middle to give the home team its first lead of the afternoon, 2-1.
Valerie Bauer (Salem, NH) fanned two batters in four innings of work to absorb her second loss of the season. Deardorff closed out the game, pitching the final two frames.
The Warriors will continue the stretch of eight games in four days March 23 at Dowling.