May 3, 2012





RIC to Face Top-Seeded Eastern Connecticut Tomorrow Morning


Mansfield, Conn.—Senior center fielder Stacy Pokora (Wilton, CT) went 3-for-4 with three runs scored, four RBI and bashed her team-leading seventh homer of the season, but third-seeded Rhode Island College lost to fourth-seeded Plymouth State, 9-8, in first round action of the 2012 Little East Conference Softball Tournament, hosted by Eastern Connecticut on Thursday afternoon.




The Anchorwomen (19-17) will face the top-seeded Warriors at 10 a.m. tomorrow back at the Eastern Softball Stadium.



 Sophomore center fielder Stacy Pokora


Freshman center fielder Taylor Nelson (Wareham, MA) went 2-for-4 with a pair of runs scored, while junior pitcher Emily Johnson (West Kingston, RI) took the loss (8-9). She allowed six runs on six hits to go along with seven walks and five strikeouts in 5.2 innings of work. Junior Jessica Borden (Lincoln, RI) and sophomore Maria Darling (Ansonia, CT) also saw action in the pitching circle for RIC.


Sophomore shortstop Bekah Jackson (Nashua, NH) launched a grand slam in the top of the fourth inning as the Panthers scored nine unanswered runs, but PSU had to hold off the Anchorwomen’s furious comeback bid in the bottom of the seventh.


The Anchorwomen cracked the scoring column in their first at-bat, when Pokora singled up the middle. Junior right fielder Kristina Gingell (Pascoag, RI) laced a two-run double down the left field line to provide Rhode Island College with the early three-run advantage. Pokora extended the Anchorwomen’s lead in the third with a two-run blast to left field.


Plymouth State was finally able to solve Rhode Island College starting pitcher Johnson in the fourth. The Panthers capitalized on a pair of walks and a bunt single down the third base line to load the bases with two outs. Jackson changed the complexion of the contest by stroking a 1-1 pitch over the left field fence to whittle the visitors’ deficit to one, 5-4. She was credited with her fifth round-tripper of the campaign.


The Panthers continued to apply the pressure in the fifth, when the first three Plymouth State batters reached safely to load the bases and chase Johnson. The Panthers greeted Borden with consecutive RBI singles to take their first advantage of the contest. Sophomore catcher Taylor Mancini (Gansevoort, NY) singled to right field to give Plymouth State a 7-5 lead.


Trailing by four runs entering the bottom of the seventh, Rhode Island College mounted a furious comeback. The first two Anchorwomen reached safely on an infield single to put runners at first and second with no outs. Pokora collected her fourth RBI of the evening with a single up the middle. Johnson followed suit with a deep sacrifice fly to the base of the right field fence. With two outs, freshman third baseman Justina Thoma (Canterbury, CT) dropped a single into center field to cut the deficit to one. Rhode Island College was unable to complete the comeback as Plymouth State sophomore Nora Galvin (Windham, NH) punched out the potential go-away run.


Galvin earned the complete-game victory to raise her record to 11-7. She allowed eight runs on 11 hits, while striking out one.


Manchini paced the Plymouth State 10-hit attack with a 2-for-3 performance at the plate with a pair of RBI. Freshman left fielder Cynthia Barata (New Fairfield, CT) went 2-for-4 with two runs batted in while third baseman Jackie Digman (Burlington, MA) recorded a pair of base knocks.


Plymouth State (21-18) will advance in the championship bracket to face second-seeded Keene State College (24-8-1).