Gators Steal Two Wins from Emmanuel on Tuesday Night in Boston

Box Scores: Game 1 | Game 2

Boston, MA – Pine Manor rallied not once, but twice to sweep Great Northeast Athletic Conference foe Emmanuel College at Roberto Clemente Field on Tuesday night in Boston, MA. The Gators used a six run fifth inning to overcome an 8-3 deficit in game one before winning game two on senior captain Michelle Campbell’s (Baltimore, MD/Seton Keough) walk-off single in the bottom of seventh inning.

Game one was as wild as its 9-8 score line would suggest. Emmanuel scored in each of the first three innings, giving the Saints a 7-3 advantage. The Gators struggled to get out of the first inning as two errors and three Emmanuel hits helped the Saints to take the lead, 2-0. PMC would then go quietly in the bottom half of the inning before Emmanuel would tack on three more runs in the second, aided by a two-RBI double into the right-centerfield gap by Emmanuel junior Chelsey Guselli (Methuen, MA/Central Catholic).

With the Saints now leading 5-0, Pine Manor would manufacture three runs to cut the deficit to within two. With two runners on, PMC sophomore Flavia Vicente (Roxbury, MA/Jeremiah E. Burke) laid down a bunt that would bring home two runs when an errant throw to first from Emmanuel starter Julia Levins (Uxbrdige, MA/Franklin) got away. With Vicente aboard, senior Jess Kennedy (Lakeville, MA/Apponequet) lined a double into centerfield to plate Vicente.

Emmanuel would then respond with two more runs, as junior Heather Hamel hit a scorcher up the middle an into the left- centerfield gap to score two freshman Sierra Roccaro (Parlin, NJ/Bishop George Ahr) and junior Elyse Turgeon (Dracut, MA/Dracut). Both Rocarro and Turgeon finished the game 3-4 for the Saints, with Rocarro scoring each time she reached base and Turgeon driving in two runs.

The PMC deficit would only increase in the fifth inning when Turgeon and Roccaro would strike again for Emmanuel. After Rocarro reached base with a lead-off single, Turgeon roped a triple into centerfield to seemingly put the game out of reach.

Faced with an 8-3 deficit, Pine Manor went to work in the fifth collecting six runs on four hits and one error to take an improbable 9-8 advantage. The Gators strung together a series of hits, perhaps none bigger than Kennedy’s two-RBI double that would plate both Campbell and Vicente and tie the game, 8-8. Kennedy would then make her way to third on a passed ball before eventually scoring the go ahead run when Turgeon allowed another one to get away behind the plate.

With the Gators now in front, 9-8, thanks to their improbable comeback, starter Tara Doehler (Lakeville, MA/Apponequet) needed little help to finish off the game, surrendering only a single in the sixth before setting down the Saints in order in the seventh inning. Doehler improved her overall record to 7-9 following game one and would see her win total increase to eight before the end of the night, thanks to another late inning rally from the Gators.

In game two, the Gators would grab the lead first as junior Kayla Nielsen (Saco, ME/Thornton Academy) doubled to drive home Kennedy for the 1-0 advantage.

However, the Gator lead was short-lived as Emmanuel responded with two runs of its own in the top of the fourth inning. The Gators were their own worst enemy, committing three errors in the inning and allowing Emmanuel to score two runs with two outs in the inning. Emmanuel would then strike again in the firth when Kelly Lloid (Issaquah,WA/ Eastside Catholic) singled up the middle to plate Levins for the 3-1 Emmanuel lead.

With the Gators unable to score in the sixth and Doehler setting down the Saints in order in the seventh, the stage was set for the Gators in the bottom of the seventh. Freshman Macayla Kirylo ( Pawtucket, RI/ William E. Tolman) started off the inning with a single up the middle for PMC. With sophomore Cheska Mendes (Dorchester, MA/Madison Park) aboard as a pinch runner, sophomore Kaylyn Delgado (Worcester, MA/ Bartlett)earned a walk to give the Gators two on and no one out. Both runners would then advance on a wild pitch, putting the tying run in scoring position.

The Gators then executed a perfect suicide squeeze when junior Jennifer Gross (Coral Springs, Fl/Coral Glades) dropped a sacrafic bunt to bring home Vicente and move Delgado to third. With a runner on third, GNAC Rookie of the Week Ashley Carusone (Nashua, NH/Nashua North) hit a hard ground ball through the left side to tie the game.
Carusone would then move to second on a bunt single by Vicente, before stealing third to put runners on the corners for Campbell. The senior from Baltimore, MD would then follow with a an RBI single up the middle to complete the Gator comeback and give Pine Manor the 4-3 victory. The walk-off victory was the third in the last four days for the Gators, who seem to have developed a knack for late-inning heroics.

With the sweep Pine Manor improves to 8-4 in GNAC play, 8-11 overall, and is in sole possession of fifth place in the conference standings. Emmanuel drops to 7-18 overall and 3-11 in conference play. The Gators will return to action tomorrow afternoon when the host Norwich at 4:00 p.m at Pine Manor Field in Chestnut Hill, MA.

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