April 22, 2011


Rathbun Leads Eastern Connecticut to Sweep

Providence, RI-Eastern Connecticut State University improved to 23-3 overall and remained undefeated with a 10-0 mark in the Little East Conference by taking a doubleheader from its main threat in the league at Rhode Island College’s Dayna A. Bazar Softball Complex on Friday evening.


Junior pitcher Molly Rathbun (Hebron, CT) struck out 18 batters as the Warriors snuck past the hosts (25-6, 5-3 LEC), 4-2, in 10 innings during the first game. A four-run fifth inning propelled Eastern to a 7-3 win in the nightcap.


Rathbun, who also came on in relief to quell an Anchorwomen rally in game two, allowed just two runs (one earned) on six hits, to go along with 20 strikeouts in 11.2 innings pitched. She also went 3-for-9 with three RBI on the day.



 Sophomore right fielder Kristina Gingell


Game one featured a matchup of the 2010 First Team All-Little East Conference pitchers in Rathbun and RIC senior Amanda Berard (Swansea, MA). The first three innings were scoreless for both clubs. Eastern broke through against Berard in the fourth as Rathbun plated junior right fielder Priscilla Alicea (Stratford, CT) with an RBI fielder’s choice.


RIC tied the game in the sixth as senior catcher Kayla Jandreau (Plainville, CT) singled with one away. Sophomore second baseman Marisa Jandreau (Plainville, CT) doubled to center field and brought in her sister with the equalizer. RIC threatened to take the lead on senior shortstop Donielle Mattoon’s (Coventry, RI) squeeze bunt attempt, but Rathbun threw out Marisa Jandreau at the plate.


After three scoreless innings, the tiebreaking procedure was put in place as Eastern freshman left fielder Stephanie Johnson (Plantsville, CT) started the 10th frame on second. Immediately, ECSU attempted a sacrifice bunt with freshman second baseman Jen Tamindzija (Malden, MA) up. Two Anchorwomen errors on the play allowed both Johnson and Tamindzija to score. Rathbun knocked in an insurance run later in the inning.


RIC got one run back in the bottom of the 10th on sophomore right fielder Kristina Gingell’s (Pascoag RI) RBI single, but the damage was already done.


Rathbun (13-0) earned the win. Berard took the loss (9-1), which was the first of the season for the righty. She allowed four runs, only one of which was earned, on six hits, in 10 innings of work.


The loss in the opener made a game two win critical for the Anchorwomen. After singling to lead off the bottom of the first, Kayla Jandreau later scored on a Warrior error. 


The advantage proved to be short-lived as Eastern evened the game at 1-1 in the top of the second on sophomore first baseman Kelly Patterson’s (Southington, CT) RBI single up the middle.


RIC junior starter Kyla Puccini (North Dighton, MA) and ECSU sophomore Christine Acker (Milford, CT) were locked in a tight duel until the Warriors busted out in a big way in the fourth inning.


Eastern smacked five doubles and scored four runs in the frame, chasing both Puccini and Berard, who came back on, from the game. Johnson, Alicea, Rathbun, sophomore third baseman Arielle Cooper (Mystic, CT) all knocked in runs with two-baggers.


The visitors added two more off of RIC sophomore reliever Emily Johnson (West Kingston, RI) in the sixth. Freshman shortstop Megan Godwin (Manchester, CT) brought in a pair with a double to left center field.


RIC tried to mount a comeback, tagging Acker for two runs in the home half of the sixth as Gingell knocked in one on a ground out and Johnson doubled in one more to make it 7-3. Eastern Head Coach Diana Pepin brought in Rathbun to slam the door and she set down the five Anchorwomen she faced in succession to preserve the win for Acker (10-1).


Godwin and Alicea joined Rathbun with a team-high three hits. Johnson scored three times for the visitors.


Kayla Jandreau went 4-for-8 with two runs scored in the two games.


In upcoming action, Rhode Island College will play a single game at Tufts on Tuesday, April 26 (4 p.m.).