CAMBRIDGE, Mass.—UMass Boston couldn't overcome an early deficit in an NCAA Tournament elimination game, as the Beacons saw their season come to an end on Sunday afternoon.
Framingham State University 8, UMass Boston 1
(UMass Boston 17-25)
(Framingham State 25-16)
HOW IT HAPPENED
The Beacons got off to a much better start than in their NCAA opener, but found themselves in another big hole they couldn't dig themselves out of. Framingham State scored five unearned runs in the second and tacked on three runs in the third to earn a spot in Game 5 of the MIT Softball Regional.
Junior Alyssa Tulley (Lowell, Mass.) led the Beacons with a team-high two RBI and a double.
In the circle, Jess Greenspan (Rocky Hill, Conn.) took the loss after allowing eight runs (three earned) in 2.2 innings.
Freshman Drew Washington (Bordentown, N.J.) made her collegiate postseason and NCAA tournament debuts in relief. She allowed just one walk and struck out one batter in 3.1 scoreless innings.
Framingham State junior Kelsi Gunarathne limited the Beacons to five hits and three walks over seven innings. She was charged with four runs (three earned) in her 16th win of the season.
Camille Desrochers, Grace Caughey and Mycala Moody each had two RBI in the victory.
UMass Boston took their first lead of the tournament in the top of the first. After back-to-back strikeouts to begin the game, the Beacons loaded the bases on a pair of errors and a hit by pitch. Braga followed by beating out an infield single that plated Danahy.
The Beacons had chances to extend the lead, but Gunarathne stranded the bases loaded in the first and left a runner on third with one out in the second.
The Rams made the Beacons pay in the bottom of the second. Framingham State put the first two runners on thanks to a single and a Beacons error, when the umpire ruled a UMass Boston player failed to tag the base on a force play. The error proved costly, as Greenspan got the next two batters, before Framingham State came through with four singles and a walk with two down.
Framingham State picked up some key insurance runs in the bottom of the third. The Rams loaded the bases on two singles and a walk and Dayna Marchant followed with an RBI single with one out. Moody plated a seventh run with an RBI groundout and Megan Downing ended Greenspan's day with an RBI single through the left side.
With two on and two outs, Washington came on and induced a groundout to third to end the inning.
UMass Boston put together their best offensive inning of the NCAA Tournament in the fifth. Danahy reached on a fielders' choice and moved to second on a Roxanne Vento (Arlington, Mass.) RBI single. Pawlina followed with an RBI single up the middle to cut the deficit to 8-2.
The Beacons should have had the bases loaded on the next play, but a base running miscue allowed Framingham State to pick up a key out. The play proved costly, as Tulley followed with a line-drive double into the left field corner that scored Pawlina and Braga.
Giovanna Bonilla (Queens, N.Y.) followed to put two on with two outs, but Gunarathne got out of the inning with a groundout to second.
That would be the last time either side threatened, as each team went down 1-2-3 in their final two at-bats.
BY THE NUMBERS
- The Beacons four runs tied their single-game high for runs in an NCAA Tournament game. UMass Boston also scored four runs in a walk-off 4-2 win last year against Salve Regina University.
- Framingham State went 5-11 with two outs and 5-8 with two outs and runners on base.
- UMass Boston leads the all-time series 20-17 against the Rams. The Beacons took the season series 2-1 this year, after sweeping Framingham State in a doubleheader in April.
- Washington's 3.1 scoreless innings marked a new career-high for the freshman in innings without allowing a run. She had only one previous appearance in which she did not allow a run, when she went two innings against UMass Dartmouth.
- Vento and Braga each played in their 42nd game of the season on Sunday. The two are tied for fifth all-time in games played in a season, after they were two of the four players who played in a program record 43 games last season.
- Danahy finished the season tied for fifth in program history for a single-season with her team-leading 48 hits. She also sits fifth all-time in program history with her .381 batting average in a single-season.
- Greenspan now holds the first and second spot for appearances in a single-season. With her start today, she is the only pitcher to have appeared in 30 or more games in a season and she's done it twice.
- Braga was named to the MIT Regional All-Tournament Team at the conclusion of the weekend.
UMass Boston is currently slated to return all 15 players from this year's team.