BIDDEFORD, Maine – The Curry College softball team fell to the Nor'easters of the University of New England (UNE) in a conference double-header on Saturday afternoon. With the two losses, the Colonels overall record sits at 8-10 while the team is still in search of their first conference win at 0-4. UNE improves to 9-7 on the year while picking up a pair of wins in their Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC) opener.
Game One: University of New England 3, Curry 1
Game one saw a pitchers' duel early on, broken only by a pair of UNE runs in the top of the first, driven in on a bases-loaded single off the bat of Meg Harvey (Westmoreland, N.H.). The 2-0 score would hold into the top of fifth, as the Colonels finally broke Nor'easter starter Sydnee Bessler (Everett, Mass.) with a double by Michaela Colleran (East Bridgewater, Mass.) which plated Jocelyn Dimond (Weare, N.H.). The Colonels collected a pair of hits in the inning, but the defense got their pitcher out of the inning as Colleran was thrown out at home to close out the frame. In the hosts' half of the fifth, UNE got the run right back to reinstate their two-run lead, as a bunt single by Avery Alberghini (Moretown, Vt.) scored Alexis Kapsambelis (Merrimack, N.H.) to make it a 3-1 game. Curry pitcher Taylor Newcomb (Millville, Mass.) led off the top of the sixth with a double to help her own cause, but three straight strikeouts stranded the runner in scoring position and sat down the Curry offense. After a scoreless bottom of the sixth, the Colonels returned to the plate, needing a pair of runs to extend the game. Jordan Strum (Somersworth, N.H.) came on in relief for the Nor'easters, however, and retired the visitors in order to wrap up game one in favor of UNE.
Alexis Buckner (Foxborough, Mass., 2-for-3), Newcomb (2-for-3), and Colleran (2-for-4) each recorded multi-hit days in the losing effort, while Colleran collected the only Curry RBI. Alberghini registered a 2-for-3 game at the plate while Harvey drove in a pair of runs. Bessler earns her fourth win of the year, giving up just one run, unearned, over six innings while striking out five. Strum collects her third save of the season after a 1-2-3 seventh. Newcomb (3-1) is saddled with her first loss of the season despite a solid complete game effort in which she surrendered just three runs.
Game Two: University of New England 8, Curry 4
Despite the lack of offense in the first game, the bats were ready to go as game two got underway. The Colonels got on the scoreboard early with two first-inning runs, highlighted by a Buckner single which pushed Colleran across the plate. The Nor'easters answered quickly, however, tying the score at two with three hits and a pair of unearned runs in the first. As Curry returned to the plate, a two-out single by Colleran retook the lead, this time at 3-2. The lead would last through the top of the third, but a steal attempt by Taylor Depot (Auburn, Maine) in the bottom half of the frame drew an errant throw and allowed Alberghini to cross the plate and tie the game at three. A batter later, a sacrifice bunt drove in Depot as the hosts took their first lead of the game at 4-3. In the following frame, the Colonels knotted the game for the third time as Liana Duarte (Taunton, Mass.) drove in Julia Price (Islip, N.Y.) to make it four-all. As the fifth inning rolled around with the game still tied, UNE got back out in front as Alberghini led off the inning with a double down the left field line before coming around to score on a groundout to second. After Duarte was left on base following a two-out single in the top of the sixth, the hosts padded their lead with a rally which was capped by an Alberghini RBI single to make the score 8-4. Following the three-run inning, Strum shut down the Colonels once more to secure the sweep of the day for the Nor'easters.
Alberghini filled the box score in game two, going 4-for-4 with an RBI and three runs scored. Kapsambelis (2-for-2, RBI, run) also contributed significantly to the UNE victory. Despite the loss, Duarte and Colleran can hang their hats on identical lines of an RBI, a run scored, and 3-for-4 performances in the batter's box. Carrigan Costello (Wolcott, Conn.) sinks to 3-5 on the year, giving up six runs over five innings, though just two of the runs were earned. Strum picks up win number two on the year after posting four strikeouts in three and two third shutout innings.
Following the wins, the Nor'easters will travel to Nichols College to continue their CCC schedule. First pitch of the conference double-header is scheduled for 3:00 p.m. on Tuesday, April 2. The Colonels will also return to action on Tuesday at three o'clock, as they head home to host a pair of games versus non-conference opponent Newbury College.