|UMass Lowell||University of Maine|
LOWELL, Mass. — UMass Lowell tallied back-to-back solo home runs in the seventh to walk-off with a 5-4 victory over the University of Maine softball team on Tuesday afternoon at River View Field. The loss slips Maine back to 18-19, 7-3 in America East play while the River Hawks improve to 16-22 and a league-best 10-2 in conference action.
Maddie Decker tallied her fourth home run of the season, ending the day 2-for-3 with a pair of RBI, while Alyssa Derrick and Meghan Royle each added two hits apiece. Derrick drove in her 26th run of the season while Laurine German also added an RBI.
Annie Kennedy earned the start in the circle for the Black Bears where she went 4.0 innings, giving up two runs on seven hits with two walks. Kyleigh O’Donnell took the loss, falling to 5-7 after surrendering three runs on four hits with two strikeouts over 2.0 innings of work.
The River Hawks began the scoring in the bottom of the first. Kennedy retired the first two batters but a single and two walks loaded the bags for the home team. Sydney Barker’s infield single to short allowed Courtney Cashman to score the game’s first run.
Maine evened the score with a run of its own in the top of the second when Decker leadoff the inning with a towering fly ball which cleared the wall in deep left center.
The Black Bears grabbed their first lead of the day in the third. Leonard’s perfectly placed bunt single started the rally before Kristen Niland drew a two-out walk. Decker followed, yanking a double down the left field line. Leonard would come in to score on the play but Niland was thrown out trying to score, ending the inning for the Black Bears but not before the visitors took a 2-1 advantage.
Maine added to its lead with a single run in the fourth. Amanda Nee started the inning with a double. Nee would advance to third on Royle’s single to center before coming in to score on German’s bunt down the first base line.
The River Haws closed to within a run in the home half of the fourth Cashman’s RBI double down the line in left brought around Madison Alcorn.
UMass Lowell tied the game in the fifth when Cooper’s two-out RBI double to left scored Casey Harding from first.
Maine regained a one-run edge in the seventh. German began the inning by shooting a double the other way into right before advancing to third on Leonard’s ground out to first. Derrick followed, roping a single to right as German would jog in from third with the go ahead run.
UMass Lowell would once again tie the game when Barker sent the first pitch she saw over the wall in left. Maria Moccio’s walk-off homer followed, clearing the fence in center to give the River Hawks a 5-4 victory in the battle between the league’s top two teams.
Maine continues America East play when it returns home for Senior Weekend at Kessock Field. The Black Bears will host Binghamton for a doubleheader on Saturday, April 28 beginning at noon before closing out the series with a single game on Sunday at 11 a.m.