MANCHESTER, N.H. – The Saint Anselm College softball team swept crosstown-rival Southern New Hampshire University in a doubleheader for the first time since 2012 with 3-2 and 1-0 wins over the Penmen on Thursday afternoon at South Athletic Fields.
Saint Anselm (8-9, 6-3 NE10) swept Southern New Hampshire (15-14, 1-8 NE10) for the first time since April 6, 2012 when the Hawks were victorious 7-3 and 5-4. The two one-run wins meant the last six meetings between the two programs have each been decided by a single run.
Saint Anselm 3, Southern N.H. 2 | Box
After the Penmen tied the game at 2-2 in the top of the seventh, Leiandra Wilson opened the home half of the frame with a double two right-center field. Borrelli was inserted as a pinch runner and, after an out, came around to score on Bickford's liner to the left-center field gap as the Hawks walked off with the win.
Seven different batters had one hit each for Saint Anselm in the win. Jordan O'Connor and Ellie Parravano each drove in runs for the Hawks prior to Bickford's dramatic double. Sam Hennequin picked up her fourth victory in as many starts by limiting the Penmen to two runs on four hits with two walks and five strikeouts in a complete-game effort.
Jessica Torsiello reached base three times for Southern New Hampshire, going 1-for-1 with two walks, a run and an RBI. Brittany Perdigao was the lone batter with multiple hits with a 2-for-3 game and also scored a run. Sarah Lavallee tossed the first four innings for the Penmen, allowing two runs, before being relieved by Gabriella Vachon, who worked the final 2.1 innings and took the loss.
Both teams had opportunities to score in the first three innings, but Hennequin and Lavallee managed to keep the offenses at bay early one. The Hawks started the scoring in the bottom of the fourth, scoring a pair of runs off Lavallee. After singles by Maggie Murphy and Shannon McLaughlin left runners on the corners with nobody out, Parravano plated Murphy with a bunt. Two batters later, O'Connor lined an RBI double down the right-field line to score Parravano and make it 2-0.
Southern New Hampshire finally got to Hennequin in the top of the fifth. After Hennequin retired the first two batters, Torsiello drew a walk and came around to score on a double by Hannah Neverett to left field.
The Penmen tied the game at 2-2 by pushing across a run on the top of the seventh. Perdigao singled to start the inning, moved to second on a sacrifice bunt and scored on a Torsiello single, although the Hawks gunned down Torsiello at third on the play.
Saint Anselm 1, Southern N.H. 0 | Box
Freshman Morgan Perry tossed a three-hit shutout in game two and fellow freshman Maggie Murphy provided the lone run of the game with a two-out RBI double in the bottom of the sixth as the Hawks finished off the sweep.
Perry stymied Southern New Hampshire, allowing just three hits and one walk while striking out four, to earn her second-straight win in the circle. Counterpart Nicole Gubellini matched Perry through the first five innings and took the loss despite allowing only two hits. Gubellini walked five and struck out three for the Penmen.
With the teams locked in a scoreless pitcher's duel through five and a half innings, Murphy delivered the decisive hit in the bottom of the sixth. Erin Thompson started the inning with a single but Gubellini got the next two batters with Thompson still at first. Murphy then sent a 2-1 pitch into the left-field gap for a double and Thompson beat the relay home for the lone run of the game.
Finally with a lead, Perry set the Penmen down in order in the top of the seventh to finish off her sixth complete game of the season in eight starts. The only hits Perry gave up were a one-out single in the second, a leadoff single in the fifth and a two-out single in the sixth. On the other side, Gubellini walked one batter in each of the first five innings but did not allow a hit until Thompson's single to start the sixth.
The two teams complete their regular-season series on Friday, April 14 with a single game at 4 p.m. at SNHU Softball Field.