Hennessey, Nelson Lead Softball in Split at Lasell, 10-0, 4-5

Hennessey, Nelson Lead Softball in Split at Lasell, 10-0, 4-5

AUBURNDALE, Mass. -- Sophomore Molly Hennessey (Charlton, Mass.) collected five extra-base hits and knocked in three runs, while senior Juliet Nelson (Cumberland, R.I.) threw a complete game shutout to lead the Simmons College softball team to a split with host Lasell College this afternoon in a Great Northeast Athletic Conference doubleheader at Taylor Field in Auburndale, Mass. The Sharks took the opener, 10-0, in five innings due to the eight-run mercy rule, before bowing in the nightcap, 5-4. Simmons game one victory gave it eight straight wins for its longest success streak since 2011 and the Sharks have now won 12 of their last 14 and own an overall record of 15-11 and 9-5 in league play, while the Lasers are 5-17 and 3-7.

Hennessey was 5-7 on the day with three doubles, two triples, three runs batted in and three runs scored for Simmons, while first year first base Hailey Yabroudy (Amherst, N.H.) enjoyed the best day of her young career at the plate with four hits in six at-bats including a double and added a pair of runs scored. First year left fielder Ivy Vann (Bend, Ore.) crushed the second home run of the season as part of a four-hit day that also included a double, a walk, three RBI and four runs scored and sophomore second base Lauren Del Vacchio (Murrieta, Calif.) contributed, going 4-7 with a walk, two runs batted in and a run scored. 

First year Bethany Hector (Jaffrey, N.H.) led Lasell, going 3-6 with a double and a run batted in, while first year Carly VanDeusen (North Haven, Conn.) rapped out three singles in six at-bats and scored a run. Sophomore Victoria Spellman (Rocky Hill, Conn.) knocked in a run with two hits in six at-bats and also scored for the home team.

The Sharks collected 21 hits on the day, including 12 in the opening game. Nelson (10-4) took care of the other side of the ball for the visitors, hurling her third career shutout with a two-hitter that featured no walks and a pair of strikeouts in five innings of work. 

Simmons scored two in the first and one in the second, before erupting for seven runs in the fourth inning to put the opening contest away. Hennessey doubled home the Sharks first run of the day and later scored on an error to give them a 2-0 lead after the top half of the first. Yabroudy singled in the second and later scored on a ground out by first year right fielder Sydney DeVogt (Exeter, N.H.)

Simmons sent 12 batters to the plate in the fourth with seven of them scoring. Yabroudy opened the frame with a double and came around to score on a triple by first year shortstop Marissa Santoro (Franklin, Mass.) to give the visitors a 4-0 margin. Del Vacchio plated Santoro with a single before Vann struck the big blow of the inning with a three-run homer to give the Sharks an 8-0 advantage. Hennessey followed with a triple and scored on a groundout from sophomore third base Dom Ortiz (Lawrence, Mass.). Santoro later singled home the final run of the game for a 10-0 lead.

Sophomore Nicole Arcese (Holliston, Mass.) (1-5) picked up the loss for the Lasers, allowing seven runs (six earned) on seven hits and three walks in three innings in addition to striking out two batters.

Lasell came away with a 5-4 win in the nightcap after scoring the decisive run in the bottom of the sixth. Spellman reached on a one-out single, before sophomore Bailey Burnett (Phillipston, Mass.) pinch ran for her and later scored on a Hector single. Simmons was unable to rally in the seventh as the home team hung on for the win to gain the split.

The Sharks got on the board first when Vann laced a one-out single and came around to score on a Hennessey double in the top of the first. The Lasers took their first lead of the day, taking advantage of a pair of errors to score two runs in the second inning. They loaded the bases without an out to begin the frame and senior Ashley Gatchell (Franklin, Mass.) brought home their first run with an RBI single. Arcese reached on fielder's choice to make it 2-1, but Lasell was unable to put any more runs on the board.

Simmons knotted the score at 2-2 with a run in the top of the third when Vann and Hennessey smacked back-to-back two-out doubles to score Vann with the second tying run. The Lasers doubled their score with two more runs in the bottom of the fourth, taking advantage of two more errors, to take a 4-2 margin. First year Hailey Haskins (Franklin, Mass.) reached on an error with two outs, stole second and scored on a Spellman single. Sophomore Arianna Genovese (Rocky Hill, Conn.) followed with an RBI single of her own to deliver the fourth run for Lasell. 

The Sharks were able to pull even with single runs in the fifth and sixth innings, before the Lasers took the lead for good in the bottom of the sixth. Sophomore Bridget Garach (West Hartford, Conn.) reached on an error to open the fifth and scored on a Del Vacchio double, while Hennessey cracked a leadoff triple in the sixth and scored on an Ortiz sacrifice fly to make it 4-4.

Haskins (4-6) earned the win for Lasell, scattering nine hits and giving up four runs (three earned) to go with three strikeouts in seven complete frames. Garach (1-1) suffered the loss in relief for Simmons, allowing one run on two hits and a pair of walks to go with a strikeout in two and a third innings.

The Sharks return to action on Wednesday, April 18 when they host Massachusetts Institute of Technology for a 5:00 p.m. twinbill at Daly Field, while the Lasers host Gordon College on April 17 for a 3:00 p.m. doubleheader.