FORT MYERS, Fla. – The Plymouth State University softball team barely got out of New England because of the snowstorm hitting the Northeast, then ended up playing three games Sunday on its opening day of action at the Gene Cusic Collegiate Classic.
The Panthers lost to Montclair State University in their first game, 3-2, as the Cardinals rallied for one run in the sixth inning and two in the bottom of the seventh. PSU came back with a 4-0 victory over Elms College in the second game of the day, picking up its first victory of the season, and then ended the day with a 7-2 loss to Franklin Pierce College.
Freshman Kat Roland (Norton, Mass./Fontbonne Academy) started and pitched well for PSU in the opener but took the loss. Junior Danielle Normand (Rumford, R.I./East Providence) led the team at the plate with a pair of hits, including a triple and a run scored, while sophomore Rachel Pothier (Reading, Mass.) contributed an RBI single and a run scored.
Sophomore Courtney MacFarland (Hampstead, N.H./Pinkerton) allowed only three hits en route to a PSU shutout victory over Elms in the middle game. The Panthers got all the runs they would need on a three-run first inning as Normand, Pothier and sophomore Heather Bartolo (Derry, N.H./Pinkerton) delivered consecutive RBI singles.
Bartolo was hot with the bat, going 3-for-3 with and RBI, while Pothier and sophomore Leanne Barry (Auburn, N.H./Pinkerton) added two hits apiece.
PSU fell behind Franklin Pierce 5-0 after two innings and could never recover. The highlight for the Panthers was a solo home run by freshman Amanda Parshley (Plaistow, N.H./Timberlane) and a double and run scored by Bartolo.
Freshman Ashley Pinkham (Center Barnstead, N.H./Kingswood) pitched well in relief of freshman starter Beth Moretti (Woonsocket, R.I.). Pinkham allowed only one run in three-and-a-third innings.
PSU will play two more games on Monday, facing Fredonia State (N.Y.) at 9:00 a.m. and Lawrence (Wis.) at 11:00 a.m.
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