April 28, 2012



Plymouth, N.H.-Sophomore center fielder Stacy Pokora (Wilton, CT) went 6-for-7 with two homers, four RBI and five runs scored as the Rhode Island College softball team split a Little East Conference doubleheader with Plymouth State on Saturday at D&M Park. RIC fell in the first game, 7-6, but bounced back to win the nightcap, 8-2.


RIC heads into Sundayís doubleheader against Keene State College at 18-15 overall and 9-3 in the LEC, while PSU completes the regular season at 20-18 overall and 7-7 in Little East action. RIC and KSC enter Sunday tied for second in the conference.


PSU jumped on top in the opener with a four-run first inning, as the first six batters reached base on five hits and a walk.  Senior center fielder Allie Luisi (North Kingstown, RI) and sophomore third baseman Jackie Digman (Burlington, MA) delivered RBI singles, while freshman left fielder Cynthia Barata (New Fairfield, CT) capped the rally with a two-run single.



 Sophomore center fielder Stacy Pokora


RIC started its comeback in the fourth inning with two runs, thanks to RBI singles by junior first baseman Emily Johnson (West Kingston, RI) and junior pitcher Jessica Borden (Lincoln, RI). After PSU got one back in the bottom of the fourth on a sacrifice fly by Luisi, Pokora cracked a two-run homer for RIC to cut the PSU lead to one. The Anchorwomen pulled ahead in the top of the sixth, 6-5, on a two-run home run by freshman shortstop Katelyn Sykora (Waterford, CT), her first career blast.


The Panthers regained the lead in the last of the sixth as junior second baseman Calli DeGrace (Plymouth, NH) tied the game with a one-out solo home run. Moments later, a bases-loaded walk to sophomore catcher Sam Hebert (Manchester, NH) proved to be the difference. Junior pitcher Ali Keith (Northfield, NH) retired the side in the seventh to pick up the win (3-1) for PSU.


Johnson got tagged with the loss (8-8) for RIC. She allowed three runs on six hits and five walks, while striking out four in six innings.


A pair of first-inning RBIís by Pokora and freshman third baseman Justina Thoma (Canterbury, CT) gave the Anchorwomen an early lead in the nightcap, only to see the Panthers match it in the bottom of the first on a two-run double by Hebert.  


That ended up as the extent of the Panther offense in the second game, as RIC took the lead for good on a solo home run by Pokora in the third inning, and added four more runs in the fifth on a two-run double by Johnson and a two-run single by Thoma. Junior right fielder Kristina Gingell (Pascoag, RI) rounded out the scoring with an RBI double in the seventh that plated Johnson.


Sophomore pitcher Maria Darling (Ansonia, CT) recorded the win in relief for RIC (1-0), scattering two hits and two walks without allowing a run in two innings of work.


Johnson also added two scoreless innings of relief as well.


Barata was charged with the loss (5-6), as she conceded seven runs on nine hits and two walks in 5.1 innings.


Aside from Pokoraís standout performance, the Anchorwomen were led by Johnson, who went 4-for-8 at the plate with three RBI and three runs scored. Freshman left fielder Taylor Nelson (Wareham, MA) went 4-for-8 with two runs scored, while Thoma finished 3-for-8 with three RBI.


In upcoming action, Rhode Island College will continue Little East Conference action at home against Keene State on Sunday, April 29 (4:30 p.m.).