Greenspan Sets Career Strikeout Record, As Softball Splits With Anchorwomen

Greenspan Sets Career Strikeout Record, As Softball Splits With Anchorwomen

PROVIDENCE, R.I.—Behind a pair of Roxanne Vento (Arlington, Mass.) home runs in game one, UMass Boston softball secured a doubleheader split with host Rhode Island College on Friday evening.

THE BASICS 

UMass Boston 7, Rhode Island College 6

Rhode Island College 1, UMass Boston 0

(UMass Boston 20-13, Little East 6-6)

(Rhode Island College 16-12, Little East 3-7)

HOW IT HAPPENED

Vento and battery mate Jess Greenspan (Rocky Hill, Conn.) both added to their long list of historic accomplishments as Beacons in game one.

Vento tied the program record with two home runs in game one, including a go-ahead, two-run home run in the top of the sixth. On the day, Vento finished 5-for-7 with two runs, four RBI and three extra-base hits. She finished with 12 total bases on the day. 

Junior pitcher Jess Greenspan (Rocky Hill, Conn.) set the program record for career strikeouts (257) and complete games (61) in game one.

GAME ONE RECAP

UMass Boston scored six of the final eight runs, to earn a comeback win over the Anchorwomen in game one.

Vento paced the Beacons in the contest, by going 3-4 with two runs, four RBI and the two home runs.

Junior Kiera Prusmack (Houston, Texas) added two hits, a run scored and an RBI. Taylor Pawlina (Woonsocket, R.I.) chipped in two hits and an RBI and Gigi Braga (Medford, Mass.) registered two hits and two runs scored.

In the circle, Greenspan held the hot-hitting Anchorwomen to six hits, four walks and six earned runs. She struck out five batters, to break Michelle Zullo's ('15) program record of 253 career strikeouts.

Rhode Island College's Briana Gough took the loss after allowing 12 hits and seven earned runs over seven innings.

UMass Boston took their first lead of the game in the top of the first. With two on and out out, Vento sprayed a hard hit grounder at the second baseman, who couldn't field the ball cleanly and Braga raced home from second base on the RBI single.

Greenspan made history in the bottom of the first. She struck out the second batter of the inning to tie Zullo's record and then struck out Gough swinging to end the frame, to offically set the career record.

Rhode Island College took the lead in the bottom of the second, behind a two-out rally. Erica Fluskey doubled with two outs and Kelsey Burgess followed with a home run to give the hosts a 2-1 lead.

Katrina Kazen added a two-run, two-out double in the bottom of the third-to push Rhode Island College's lead to 4-1.

UMass Boston recorded two runs of their own in the top of the fourth. Alyssa Tulley (Lowell, Mass.) led off with a single and came in to score on Prusmack's double to the wall. Pawlina followed with an RBI single that brought in Prusmack.

The Anchorwomen answered right back. With two outs and two on, Gough doubled to score both runners, but she was thrown out at third base on a perfect relay throw from Pawlina to Tori Dicenso (Lynn, Mass.) to Ari Bilotta (Leominster, Mass.).

Vento kept the Beacons momentum going at the plate in the fifth, as she sent a home run over the center-field fence to lead off the inning. Kelly Danahy (Kingston, Mass.) followed with a double and she scored on Prusmack's RBI single back to the circle.

UMass Boston took the lead in the sixth. After Braga led off with a single, Vento crushed a home run over the right-center field fence to give the Beacons a 7-6 advantage.

Greenspan allowed a base runner in each of the final two frames, but shut the hosts down from there to secure the victory.

GAME TWO RECAP

Rhode Island College scored a run in the bottom of the first and hung on behind the right arm of senior Erica Fleming.

The senior celebrated Senior Day in a big way, as she limited the Beacons to seven hits and no runs over seven innings.

Beacons freshman Hayley Catania (Amesbury, Mass.) was just as good. The freshman righty scattered three hits, two walks and one earned run over six frames of work.

Vento was the lone Beacon to finish with multiple hits, as she went 2-for-3 with a double.

The Beacons had their best chance to score in the top of the first.

UMass Boston recorded three hits in the inning, but failed to score. Giovanna Bonilla (Queens, N.Y.) singled with one out, but she was thrown out trying to take third base on Vento's single. Bilotta followed with a single to put runners at the corners with two outs, but Fleming induced a groundout back to the first baseman to get out of the inning.

Rhode Island College scored their lone run in the bottom of the inning. Erica Simmons led off the inning with a single, stole second and then raced home on Marissa Cushman's RBI single. The damage could have been worse, but with two on and one out, Braga turned a double play to get the Beacons out of the inning.

The Beacons put a runner at second base with two outs in the second, third and fifth innings, but couldn't come through with the key hit.

UMass Boston mounted one final rally in the seventh. Tulley reached first on an error to open the inning and her pinch runner, Sarah Harlinski (Sturbridge, Mass.), moved to second on a sac bunt and third on a Pawlina infield single. With two runners in scoring position and two outs, Fleming induced a foul pop to end the contest.

BY THE NUMBERS

  • Vento joins Dicenso and six other Beacons as the only players in program history to hit two home runs in a single game. After not having a player hit multiple homers in one game in four years, the Beacons had players (Dicenso and Vento) do it in back-to-back games.
  • Greenspan now holds every major statistical career program record for a pitcher. She is the record holder in wins (47), saves (three), strikeouts (257) appearances (84), innings pitched (491.2) and complete games (61).
  • Vento now stands just five hits (197) and 17 total bases (308) away from tying Sue Killilea's ('13) program records in each category.
  • UMass Boston and Rhode Island College have split doubleheaders in each of the past two years. The Beacons improved to 10-54-1 against the Anchorwomen and they have now won seven of the past nine meetings.
  • The Beacons have been shutout twice this season, with Catania taking the loss both times in 1-0 setbacks.

WHO'S NEXT  

UMass Boston will close out their home slate, when they host Castleton University on Tuesday at 3:30 and 5:30 p.m. in a conference doubleheader.