The Framingham State University softball team surrendered a pair of runs in the bottom of the fifth and sixth as they were defeated 4-2 by Rowan University in an opening round game of the NCAA Tournament at the Babson Park Regional at Alumni field.
Both teams return to action on Saturday as Rowan will take on the winner of Friday’s Babson-Lesley game at 9 a.m., while Framingham State faces the loser of that contest at 11:30 a.m.
Junior Nicole Paiotti hit the go-ahead home run in the sixth inning for Rowan, which snapped a four-game losing streak, is now 32-9 on the year, while Framingham State falls to 30-12 overall.
Sophomore Carly Anderson went 2-for-3 with two RBI for the Profs, who got hits from seven different players. First-year Jesse DeDomenico allowed just one earned run on three hits over seven innings while striking out three in her NCAA Tournament debut to improve to 11-4 on the year.
Rams’ sophomore Kelsi Gunarathne gave up four runs on nine hits to go along one strikeout in six innings to fall to 16-7 on the season.
Junior Dayna Marchant led off the game by reaching on a throwing error and later moved to second on a ground out before scoring on a fielding error to give Framingham State a 1-0 lead. DeDomenico retired 11 straight batters after giving up the unearned run, but the Rams struck again in the fifth as junior Bridget McGrail drove in first-year pinch runner Kristen Dick with a two-out pinch hit single to make it 2-0.
Rowan was limited to just three hits over the first four innings and had a runner cut down at the plate following a wild pitch to end the fourth. Gunarathne got two quick outs to start the fifth, but the Profs followed with three straight singles and tied the game when Anderson drove in sophomore Kristina Mueller and classmate Gianna Genello with a base hit to right.
DeDomenico retired the side with just five pitches in the top of the sixth, and Paiotti led off the bottom of the frame by drilling a 3-1 pitch over the fence in left center to give Rowan a 3-2 lead. DeDomenico scored on a two-out RBI double by senior Damariz Mercado and then took advantage of a game-ending double play in the top of the seventh to close out the victory.
Release courtesy of Babson Sports Information