By: David Souza
The Boston University softball team has been trying to stave off a lengthy losing streak that dates back to their last win on March 10 over Cal State Fullerton. Since that contest, the Terriers (8-20, 0-3 PL) have endured an eight-game losing streak, which continued in a double-header sweep by the University of Massachusetts on Thursday afternoon in Amherst.
With the contests being shifted over to UMass after poor weather conditions in Boston forced the doubleheader to be postponed a day, the Terriers sought to avoid the distraction of their changed surroundings against a Minutewomen team that had rattled off five consecutive victories. However, BU failed to come up with enough runs in either contest, as they fell 6-4 and 3-1.
In the first game, sophomore Alexa Ponce and junior Jilee Schnada led the Terriers, as their offense built off of a six-run performance against Lehigh back on March 26. Trailing 3-0 thanks to a pair of RBI singles by Kate Dennis and Melissa Garcia, BU finally managed to get on the board on Schanda’s second at-bat of the day.
The junior turned on the second pitch she saw and deposited it over the left field wall for her first homer of the season and the second of her career.
The solo-shot sparked a Terrier rally, as BU struck for another run in the inning when Ponce reached on an infield single, bringing home Alex Heinen. An inning later, the scarlet and white would knot the score at three when Schanda stroked an RBI single to right.
Unfortunately for BU, UMass regained its three-run lead half an inning later, striking for a trio of unearned tallies. After a two-out error allowed Kaycee Carbone to score the go-ahead run, Meg Colleran brought in another when she smacked a single down the right field line. The sixth UMass run of the day also scored in that same sequence, after a throwing error allowed runners to advance.
And while Ponce was able to bring the Terriers within a pair of runs with her RBI single to center in the bottom of the sixth, BU was unable to complete the comeback as they fell in game one.
In the second game the Terriers bats fell all but silent, as they scored a lone run in the bottom of the sixth. And while senior right-hander Makinna Akers allowed just one earned run in a complete game, she and the Terriers took the loss after a pair of unearned runs gave UMass the lead in the sixth.
Dueling back and forth with Colleran through five scoreless innings, Akers (4-6) started off the sixth by allowing a bunt single to Erin Stacevicz. The UMass sophomore moved over after a sacrifice bunt and a throwing error allowed Madison Gimpl to reach safely before an RBI single by Kaitlyn Stavinoha broke the scoreless tie.
Garcia added an unearned run two batters later off of an RBI single, while Nicole Imhof tacked on another after reaching on an RBI fielder’s choice.
The Terriers responded in the bottom of the inning by loading the bases for Heinen, who currently leads the team with five homeruns and 17 RBIs. The sophomore kept this one in the yard, but drove in a run with an RBI groundout to short. Despite putting the tying run on second in the bottom of the seventh, BU was unable to finish off the comeback as they dropped their eight straight.
The rut continues for the Terriers, who were set to host the University of Maine for a series this weekend and visit nearby Harvard on Tuesday – however, all of the contests were either cancelled or postponed due to weather.
BU will next look to break the losing skid on Thursday when they travel to Providence College for a 4 p.m. matchup with the Friars. Last season, the Terriers rolled to a 10-2 win in five innings over PC, something BU will look to replicate.