Pride Claims First Win of Season in Split in Myrtle

Crystal Daly
Crystal Daly

 NORTH MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. - The Regis (Mass.) softball team is in the win column after earning a split in the team's doubleheader on Wednesday at the North Myrtle Beach Park and Sports Complex. The Pride opened the day by falling 4-0 to Cedar Crest College, before winning their first game of the season in a 7-1 victory over Lehman College in game two. With the split, the Pride is now 1-4 on the young season.

In the first game of the day, the Pride's Madi McLellan (Fremont, N.H.) was out-dueled by Cedar Crest's Laura Rau (Emmaus, Pa.) en route to a 4-0 Regis defeat. The game was scoreless and each team had just two hits entering the top of the fifth inning, when the Falcons scored the game's first run. After a lead-off error gave Aimee Sarboukh (Somerset, N.J.) second base with no outs, the Falcons dropped down a perfect sacrifice bunt to move her over to third and put the Pride in a jam. Next to the plate stepped junior Jackie Gallagher (Fort Worth, Texas), who roped a base hit to left to give the Falcons the 1-0 lead.

The Pride threatened to tie the game in the bottom of the inning, as freshman Ellery Rasmussen (Kingston, N.H.) reached on a dropped third strike to open the frame. After pinch runner Jenna Casello (Westborough, Mass.) advanced to third on a sacrifice bunt and a passed ball, she was left stranded and Cedar Crest maintained its one-run lead.

The Falcons tacked on three more runs in the top of the sixth to extend the lead the 4-0 after starting the inning with three straight hits and a reach on error. McLellan was able to get the next two batters, before allowing the game's fourth run on a wild pitch with two outs in the frame.

The Pride threatened in the bottom of the inning as junior Amanda Navarro (Stoneham, Mass.) laced a one-out double down the left field line, but the threat was short-lived. On the next play, pinch runner Aaliyah Felder (Brockton, Mass.) was gunned down by center fielder Kelly Reading (Taunton, Mass.) trying to take third on a flyout.

Rau continued to dominate the Pride in the final inning, allowing only one baserunner on an error before picking up her third win of the season. Rau threw a complete game 3-hitter for the Falcons, striking out three in the shutout victory. McLellan went the distance for the Pride as well, allowing just one earned run on six hits and striking out six in the loss.

Against Lehman, the Pride offense jumped out to an early lead and never looked back to secure the team's first win of the 2017 season. In the bottom of the first inning, Nejaime smacked a double just inside the chalk down the left field line, driving in a pair and giving Regis a 2-0 lead early.

The bats stayed hot in the second inning for the Pride as well, as the team put up four more in the frame to jump out to a 6-0 lead. On a play that appeared a near-carbon copy from the inning before, sophomore lead-off hitter Brianna Napoleone (Medford, Mass.) smoked a double down the line in left, driving in two more Regis runs and putting the Pride ahead by four with one out in the inning. Seniors Allison Caloggero (Medford, Mass.) and Rachel Tortora (Malden, Mass.) would each pick up RBIs later in the inning on bases-loaded walks to stretch the lead to six.

The Pride added one more in the third inning on an RBI groundout by Taylor Arcuri (Newton, Mass.) to run the Regis lead to seven, which was more than enough for freshman pitcher Crystal Daly (North Grosvenordale, Conn.). The rookie was dealing in the circle, taking a no-hitter into the fifth inning, before it was broken up on a two-out triple up the middle, which also ended the Pride's shutout.

Daly's afternoon came to an end after she got the next batter to fly out to left, but she would go on to pick up the win, allowing just the one run on one hit and striking out four over five innings pitched. Sophomore Lisa Lusardi (Enfield, Conn.) threw two scoreless innings in relief to close out the Pride's victory.

Nejaime went 2-for-3 in the victory with a pair of RBIs and a run scored to pace the Pride offense, while sophomore Kelsey Grimard (Pelham, N.H.) went 2-for-2 with a pair of runs scored before she was removed for rest after the second inning. The Pride was strong at forcing Lehman pitcher Yaidee Nieves (Bronx, N.Y.) to have to work, as the team was able to draw eight walks on the afternoon, led by Tortora who drew a pair. Despite the big win, the team stranded 12 baserunners on the afternoon.

Next up for the Pride, they will take on Wesley and Cazenovia on Thursday in team's final double header in Myrtle Beach. First pitches are scheduled for 9:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m.