Reilly Tosses Two-Hitter against MIT, while Stock Strikes out 14 in Victory over WPI
WORCESTER, Mass.—Junior Ali Reilly (New Canaan, Conn.) tossed a two-hitter against fifth-seeded MIT and first-year Brooke Stock (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.) recorded a career-high 14 strikeouts against top-seeded WPI as fourth-seeded Babson College opened New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) Tournament play with a pair of victories on Friday afternoon at Rooftop Field.
The Beavers edged MIT 1-0 in the opening game of the tournament and followed it up with a 4-1 victory over WPI.
With back-to-back wins over regionally-ranked foes, Babson improves to 25-12 overall. MIT is now 20-12, while WPI falls to 27-12 on the year.
GAME 1 vs. MIT
Reilly (11-7) struck out six and sophomore Josephine Mares (Houston, Texas) went 2-for-2 with a double and scored the only run of the game as the Green and White defeated the Engineers for the third time this season. Senior Leslie Moore (Atkinson, N.H.) reached twice and sophomore Ashley Tango (Reading, Mass.) had a single and an RBI for the Beavers.
Mares led off the bottom of the first with a double and moved to third on a single by Moore before racing home on Tango's sacrifice fly to right field to give Babson a 1-0 lead. The Beavers loaded the bases with one out in the third thanks to a pair of infield singles and a walk, but MIT sophomore Ravenne Nasser (Methuen, Mass.) got back-to-back ground outs to escape the innings unscathed.
Reilly got a double play to end the fourth and the Engineers loaded the bases in the fifth without the benefit of a hit before Reilly fanned senior Natalie Shifflet (Poway, Calif.) to maintain the lead. Sophomore Erika Anderson (Carlsbad, Calif.) doubled to begin the seventh and advanced to third with one out, but first-year shortstop Annie Mitchell (Rehoboth, Mass.) caught sophomore Kim Veldee's (Kirkland, Wash.) sinking liner and doubled up Anderson at third base to end the game.
Nasser (11-7) allowed six hits while striking out two and walking one in a complete game effort for MIT.
GAME 2 vs. WPI
For the second time in a week, Stock put together a dominating performance against WPI, allowing just four hits and walking only one to win her third straight decision. Junior Samantha Smith (Hillsborough, N.J.) went 2-for-3 with two RBI and Mares added two hits to go along with an RBI and a run scored in the win.
Stock punched out seven of the first nine WPI hitters, but junior Ama Biney (Worcester, Mass.) tripled to center to lead off the fourth and later scored on sophomore Renee LeClaire's (Merrimack, N.H.) double to go in front 1-0. Stock fanned junior Julia Veitch (Carlisle, Mass.) with a pair of runners in scoring position to escape further damage, and the Beavers responded on offense with a four-run fifth inning.
First-year Tori Roche (Andover, Mass.) reached with a one-out single and tied the game on classmate Jacqueline Paul's (Burlington, N.J.) double to right center. Mares plated senior Shannon Kortmann (Manalapan, N.J.), who came on as a pinch runner with a single to left, and Smith came through with a two-out, two-run single that drove in Mares and first-year Kayla Schinik (Watchung, N.J) to make it 4-1.
The Engineers loaded the bases to start the bottom of the frame, but Stock responded by striking out Biney, first-year Cassie Graca (Somerset, Mass.) and LeClaire to end the threat.
First-year MacKenzie Phillips (11-5) allowed four runs on seven hits while striking out two and walking two in five innings for WPI.
Both teams return to action on Saturday as Babson takes on Springfield in a winner's bracket game at 5 p.m., while WPI faces Wellesley in an elimination game at 11 a.m.
• Babson, which is eighth in the NCAA regional rankings improves to 5-1 this season against MIT and WPI.
• The Beavers have won their first two NEWMAC Tournament games for the first time since 2012.
• Over her last three starts, Stock has allowed one earned run on nine hits while striking out 31 in 21.0 innings.
• Mares is now 11-for-19 (.579) at the plate in six conference tournament games, while Smith is batting .423 (11-for-26) with six RBI in eight career postseason contests.