UMass Splits With George Mason To Earn No. 4 Seed In Next Week's Atlantic 10 Championship
May 3, 2014
AMHERST, Mass. - The Massachusetts softball team split a doubleheader with George Mason on the final day of the regular-season and will enter next week's Atlantic 10 Championship as the No. 4 seed.
UMass (15-20-1, 9-6-1 A-10) dropped the first game 5-0 before scoring four runs in the bottom of the seventh for a 6-5 walk-off win over GMU (22-21, 6-10) in game two.
The Minutewomen will open the tournament on Wednesday, May 7 against No. 5 seed Dayton (25-27, 9-9) at Fordham's Bahoshy Field in Bronx, N.Y. First pitch is set for Noon Eastern Time.
On Saturday, UMass got another fine contribution from freshman Jena Cozza, who went 4-for-7 with two runs and an RBI on the day. She was also perfect in 10 chances in the field.
Freshman Tara Klee (5-4) struck out three and scattered five hits in her fourth complete-game victory of the year.
Game One - GMU won 5-0
Mason scored all of its runs in the last three innings and outhit UMass 6-to-4 while leaving 10 runners on base in a 5-0 victory.
Tiffany Webb went 3-for-4 and scored twice to lead the Patriots' attack.
In the fifth, Webb got a 2-out bloop single off the bag at second and then Brooke Blankenship was hit by a Caroline Raymond pitch. Casey Price singled off Cozza's outstretched glove at third and both runners scored when the deflected ball was thrown wild to first by Quianna Diaz-Patterson, giving the Patriots a 2-0 lead.
Mason got another run in the sixth when Mary O'Connor laid down a sacrifice bunt with runners on the corners, which allowed Lauren McGolgan to score from third.
Back-to-back singles from Webb and Blankenship, and walks to Price and Angela Maioran pushed the first run across in the seventh for the Patriots. After a force at home, Price scored on a fielder's choice to close out the scoring.
Raymond (9-11) struck out four but walked seven and took the loss.
Game Two - UMass won 6-5
Blankenship hit a pair of home runs, her sixth and seventh of the season, to give the Patriots a 5-0 lead after two-and-a-half innings.
UMass got a pair back in the home-half of the third Diaz-Patterson scored on a bases-loaded error by O'Connor and Cozza cross the plate on a Taylor Carbone sacrifice fly.
The Minutewomen were held hitless by reliever Christina Gabrielle over three-plus innings before she was lifted with one out in the seventh.
That's when UMass mounted its rally.
Diaz-Patterson scored on Cozza's hard single to left for the first run of the inning. Tiffany Meeks hit a bases-loaded single off the glove of pitcher Casey Herring to cut the deficit to 5-4. Carbone followed with a single to center that scored Lindsey Webster from third and Bridget Lemire from second ahead of the throw home that was offline.
The Minutewomen were down to their final strike three times in the final inning.