DUDLEY, Mass. — The Endicott softball team continued its own marathon of rescheduled games, playing 16 games across 12 days so far in the month of April, with a Patriot's Day road bout against host Nichols College Monday afternoon at the Softball Field in which the Gulls swept the Bison, 1-0 and 6-3.
Today's doubleheader was rescheduled from March 26, 2017, when it was set to be Nichols' home opener, but weather became a deciding factor.
GAME ONE: ENDICOTT 1, NICHOLS 0
The Gulls managed one hit in each of the first six innings except the third, but couldn't get five runners past second base, until three base knocks in the seventh and final frame pulled through to push across the eventual winning run.
Senior third baseman Lindsee Allienello's (East Providence, R.I.) RBI single through the left side with one out plated sophomore designated player Hayley Arduini (Southington, Conn.) with the lone run of the game.
Meanwhile, Gulls' freshman starter Michaela Hamill (Lynn, Mass.) dazzled again in the circle, tossing her fourth career complete-game (third shutout) while scattering just three hits and two walks and escaped a jam in the seventh to earn her fifth win (5-1) of the year.
GAME TWO: ENDICOTT 6, NICHOLS 3
A three-run first inning got the Gulls off to a quick start as junior catcher Emily Sharpe (South Glens Falls, N.Y.) began the festivities with her first of four RBIs of the game, as her two-out single up the middle drove in the game's first run.
Sharpe, who would fall just a triple short of hitting for the cycle, then belted her first career homer with a solo blast to center field to give the Gulls a 4-0 lead in the third inning.
Endicott increased its lead to 6-0 in the fourth inning on Sharpe's two-RBI double to right before Nichols fought back with a pair of runs in the bottom of the frame on a bases-loaded walk followed by an RBI single from junior shortstop Kendall Meehan (Danvers, Mass.).
Trailing 6-2, Nichols added another run in the sixth courtesy of sophomore first baseman Jessica Kuelling's (Gales Ferry, Conn.) RBI double for the first extra-base hit of the day for the hosts.
Sophomore pitcher Laura Somerville (Suffield, Conn.) picked up the win (6-4) in 4 2/3 innings of work before being relieved by junior Mikaela Mallozzi (Shelton, Conn.) who went on to earn her first career save.
BEYOND THE BOX SCORE
- Sharpe led the Gulls at the plate with a 2-for-3 effort (one double) in Game 1 and followed that up with another 4-for-4 showing in Game 2 with a pair of singles, double, home run, and four RBIs.
- Sophomore first baseman Jamie Hopgood (Warwick, R.I.) extended her current streak of reaching base safely to 16 straight games.
- Endicott now has five shutout victories this season.
- Endicott now has seven home runs on the season as a team.
- The Gulls earned their fourth conference doubleheader sweep of the season (third consecutive) to push their win streak to six straight.
FOR THE FOES
- The Bison out-hit the Gulls, 12-7, in Game 2.
- Freshman pitcher Alexis Ferris (Holyoke, Mass.) was charged with both losses in nine innings in the circle to fall to 9-5 on the season as she allowed just one run on eight hits, walked one and struck out nine batters in Game 1 before lasting just two innings in Game 2 (three hits, three runs (two earned), three walks, three strikeouts).
- Meehan paced Nichols with a 3-for-6 showing at the dish with one RBI in the two games combined.
- The Gulls are 36-2 all-time and 17-2 on the road at Nichols, as the Bison beat the Gulls for the first time in 11 meetings with a doubleheader split on April 12, 2015. However, Endicott swept last season's series (6-3, 8-4) in the Gulls' final pair of regular-season CCC games on April 25, 2016.
Endicott (13-13, 8-6 CCC) welcomes Thomas (Me.) to its campus for an out-of-conference twin bill on Tuesday, April 18th at 3:00/5:00 p.m.
Nichols (11-13, 4-8 CCC) hosts Fitchburg St. in a non-conference doubleheader on Wednesday, April 19th at 3:30/5:30 p.m.
(Photo Credit — Matt Connelly)