EAST BOSTON, Mass. - Junior Mikaela Caracciolo (North Attleboro, Mass.) tripled and homered and first year Juliet Nelson (Cumberland, R.I.) earned a pitching victory to lead the Simmons College softball team in a doubleheader split with host Suffolk University winning the opener, 9-4, and the Sharks taking the nightcap, 2-1, in a Great Northeast Athletic Conference showdown at American Legion Playground in East Boston, Mass. The Sharks are now 11-10 overall and 8-4 in league play, while the Rams' 11-game win streak comes to an end, leaving them at 18-6 and 12-2.
Suffolk scored three runs in the bottom of the fifth to break a 4-4 tie and added two insurance runs in the sixth. First year catcher Delaney Sylvester (Worcester, Mass.) plated a pair of runs with a triple to give the Rams a 6-4 lead, before trotting home on a two-out triple by first year left fielder Morgan Parmeter (Maynard, Mass.). Sylvester struck again for Suffolk with a two-run single in the sixth to give the home team a 9-4 advantage.
Each team scored a run in the first inning with Simmons cracking the scoring column first. Caracciolo worked a walk and later scored when sophomore third baseman Kat Guillotte (New Bedford, Mass.) reached on an error. The Rams matched the run in the bottom of the frame when first year right fielder Devlin Frost (Tewsbury, Mass.) opened the inning with a single and later scored when senior third baseman Nicole Rosa (Wallingford, Conn.) reached on a fielder's choice.
Suffolk took a 4-1 lead in the second with three runs, including a sacrifice fly from Frost and an RBI single from sophomore shortstop Kristen Young (Windsor, Conn.). The Sharks got a run back in the third when Caracciolo led off the frame with her second home run of the year to cut he deficit to 4-2. Simmons put two more runs on the board in the fifth to knot the game at 4-4. Senior shortstop Hannah Cunningham (Cotuit, Mass.) and senior starting pitcher Lauren Backhaus (Windsor, Conn.) each singled and later scored when Guillotte reached on an error.
First year pitcher Ali Yamakaitis (Avenel, N.J.) (5-2) earned the victory for the Rams by throwing two and two-thirds innings of three-hit relief, while striking out three batters. Backhaus (7-3) took the loss for the Sharks, allowing eight runs (four earned) on 11 hits and a pair of walks in five innings, while fanning three batters.
Frost and Young each collected three hits and knocked in a run for Suffolk, while Sylvester drove in three runs on two hits. Caracciolo batted in a run and scored two others for Simmons and sophomore designated player Janyne Sierra (Everett, Mass.) was 2-2 at the plate.
Nelson held the Rams to just five hits in game two to pace the Sharks. Simmons tallied a pair of runs in the sixth to take a 2-1 lead and held on for the victory. Sierra reached on an error and later scored the tying run on a wild pitch. Guillotte reached on a fielder's choice, junior center fielder Heather White (Westfield, Mass.) and sophomore right fielder Brianna Rastello (Salem, N.H.) each worked walks to load the bases, before Nelson drew a walk to force in the go-ahead and eventual winning run for Simmons.
Suffolk got on the board in the fourth when Young singled, stole second and later came around to score on a Sylvester sacrifice fly to take a 1-0 edge.
Nelson yielded just one run on five hits and one walk in seven complete innings to improve to 4-3 on the season for the Sharks, while first year starter Kathleen Slavin (Rocky Hill, Conn.) (6-2) allowed two unearned runs on two hits and five walks, while striking out five in five and two-thirds innings for the Rams.
Caracciolo and senior first baseman Jess Uschmann (Feeding Hills, Mass.) each had a hit for the visitors and White drew a pair of walks, while Young led the Suffolk offense with a pair of hits.
Simmons returns to action tomorrow when it hosts GNAC foe Lasell College for a 3:30 p.m. twinbill at Lasell College in Newton, Mass., while the Rams host Johnson & Wales University on April 14 at 3:30 p.m.