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Softball: Opponents Score All of Their Runs in Final At-Bats; Warriors Ousted in Little East

Softball: Opponents Score All of Their Runs in Final At-Bats; Warriors Ousted in Little East

PLYMOUTH, N.H. -- Freshman Morgan Bolduk (Vernon) pitched a five-hitter with seven strikeouts and no walks but Kerry Farrell broke up a pitcher's duel with a one-out triple in the top of the eighth inning for the only run of the game to send No. 5 UMass Dartmouth to a winners' bracket game Thursday and drop No. 2  Eastern Connecticut State University into an elimination game, where top-seeded Plymouth State University eliminated the Warriors, 4-0, later Thursday, and ended Eastern's season.

Hannah Smith tossed a complete-game four-hit shutout for UMass, which avenged two home losses to Eastern during the regular season. Smith fanned one and walked two. 

Batting leadoff, sophomore shortstop Sara Pisanelli (Wallingford) had two hits for Eastern against UMass (24-13), including a double.

Pisanelli reached on a two-out error in the bottom of the eighth but Smith got a game-ending infield pop.

In the top of the eighth,  Emily Colton reached on an infield single, was sacrificed to second by Leah Major and rode home on Farrell's triple to right-center.

In losing its third game this year to Plymouth (24-14) this year, Eastern (17-22) again carried its opponent into a scoreless game into the seventh inning, but the Panthers responded with four runs (three unearned) in the inning on five hits, an infield error and sacrifice bunt.

Bolduk (10-11) had limited Plymouth to just three hits entering the seventh. Bolduk supported her own pitching effort with two hits. She singled to open the bottom of the first but was caught stealing, and singled with two out in the third to move Megan Hodgdon (Cheshire) to third, but complete-game winner Caitlyn Miller (14-7) ended the threat with a ground ball to third.

In a scoreless second game, Hodgdon doubled with one out in the fifth, moved to third on a ground ball, but died there when Miller induced a ground ball to first.

In two games, Eastern managed only nine hits (seven singles). Hodgdon had three hits, Bolduk and Pisanelli two each, but the rest of the team combined to go 2-for-31.

In 15 innings, Bolduk fanned 12 with one walk. She gave up 13 hits and only two earned runs for a 0.93 ERA.