No. 25 MIT Takes Two From Simmons On Patriots Day

Senior Natalie Shifflet
Senior Natalie Shifflet

THE BASICS:

- Scores:

Game One – No. 25 MIT 11, Simmons College 1 (Five Innings)
Game Two – No. 25 MIT 8, Simmons College 0 (Five Innings)

- Records: MIT (20-4); Simmons College (9-18)

- Location: Cambridge, Mass. (Briggs Field)

- The Lead: The No. 25 nationally-ranked MIT softball team earned a two-game sweep of Simmons College in non-conference action on Monday afternoon at Briggs Field. The Engineers defeated the Sharks 11-1 in game one and followed it with an 8-0 victory in the nightcap. Additionally, senior Natalie Shifflet (Poway, Calif.) registered the 100th hit of her career and junior Jasmin Joseph (Woodland Hills, Calif.) broke the career triples record and tied the mark for most triples in a single season.

For the third time in program history and in as many years, the MIT softball team reached the 20-win plateau with today's sweep of Simmons. Both times the Engineers have made it to and past 20 wins in a season, they have reached both the New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) Postseason Tournament and the NCAA Division III Softball Championship Tournament. MIT is also one of three teams in the NEWMAC to have reached 20 wins this spring as the Engineers are joined by WPI (20-10) and No. 19 Springfield College (24-6) in that category.

HOW IT HAPPENED:

Game One

- MIT scored in every offensive inning in the series opener, which included a five run fourth to secure the game one win. After Joseph led off the bottom of the first with a triple to left center, N. Shifflet singled her home on a bunt to the pitcher to give MIT the early 1-0 lead. In the second, freshman Devon Goetz (Rockville, Md.) reached and moved to second on a dropped fly ball by the right fielder. The freshman came around to score two at-bats later when a throwing error by the pitcher went over the first baseman's head. Joseph then scored MIT's third run on an RBI infield single by freshman Michelle Wist (Cypress, Texas).

- In the third, MIT added three more. One on an infield groundout by N. Shifflet that scored sophomore Ravenne Nasser (Methuen, Mass.), who singled to shortstop to begin the inning, and two more on a two-run double to right center by Wist. The Engineers put the game out of reach in the fourth with a five spot and junior Deanna Delgado (Miami, Fla.) worked her way out of a bases loaded jam in the top of the fifth for the 11-1 win in game one.

- The fourth inning saw freshman Sierra Rosenzweig (Anchorage, Alaska) bring home senior Ali Trueworthy (Rochester, N.H.) on an infield single, Joseph bring home Goetz on a ground out, an RBI triple by senior Helen Rosenthal (Bethesda, Md.) that scored Rosenzweig and a ground out by senior Monica Shifflet (Poway, Calif.) that brought Rosenthal home from third.

INSIDE THE NUMBERS:

- Wist was 2-for-3 with three RBI's to lead the Engineers offensive effort today. Additionally, Trueworthy and Rosenzweig both had two hit games as well. Rosenthal also registered her first collegiate triple during her at-bat in the fifth inning.

- Nasser improved to 10-3 with her four inning effort in the circle for MIT. The sophomore tossed 53 pitches (38 for strikes), scattered three hits, struck out five batters and allowed one unearned run. Delgado, who came on in the fifth for MIT, walked two and struck out two, to end game one. Simmons starter Alex Soqui shouldered the loss (1-3) on two and two-thirds innings, eight hits, six runs (one earned), one walk and two strikeouts. Bridget Garach came on to finish the game for the Sharks, but yielded five runs (all earned), four hits and two walks over the final one and one-third innings in game one.

- N. Shifflet's base hit in the bottom of the first was the 100th of her career as she became the program's sixth student-athlete to reach that mark. Earlier this season, Trueworthy notched her 100th hit of her collegiate career, which came on Monday, April 3 against Babson College. Additionally, Joseph's triple in the first also broke the program record for career triples as she now has 14 to her name after adding another in game two.

HOW IT HAPPENED:

Game Two:

- The Engineers exploded for seven runs in the bottom of the very first inning as they were well on their way to a two-game sweep. Joseph began the frame with a double left center and was brought home in the very next at-bat on an RBI single to right by M. Shifflet. With runners on first and second, freshman Sarah Von Ahn (West Linn, Ore.) plated both junior Zoe Hinton (Aurora, Colo.) and M. Shifflet on a single to center to make the score 3-0. The Engineers proceeded to load the bases as Goetz earned a walk for MIT's fourth run and Joseph cleared the bags with a three-run triple down the left field line.

- The MIT offense would add one more in the bottom of the fifth to end the game by the run rule. After the Engineers loaded the bases once again – this time on a Rosenzweig bunt single, a fielding error by the pitcher, and a walk by sophomore Erika Anderson (Carlsbad, Calif.), Goetz hit the ball to shortstop and the throw came home, but Rosenzweig beat the throw to give MIT the 8-0 five inning victory and both ends of the doubleheader.

- In her fifth start of the spring, MIT sophomore Amber VanHemel (Coconut Creek, Fla.) was dominant in the circle. In her four innings of work, the sophomore allowed just four runners to reach base. Freshman Alex Hanselman (Naperville, Ill.) came out of the pen for the Engineers in the top of the fifth. Despite allowing a one out double and single in back-to-back at-bats, Hanselman settled down to get the final two outs – one on a pop out and one on a fly out to preserve MIT's advantage heading to the bottom of what proved to be the final frame of the game.

INSIDE THE NUMBERS:

- Joseph led the way for MIT with a 2-for-2 performance at the top of the lineup that went along with a game-high three RBI's. Both Von Ahn and Goetz also helped the Engineers' offensive attack as they each tallied two RBI's of their own.

- VanHemel improved to 5-0 on four innings as she allowed just one hit, one walk and punched out one batter. Hanselman, in her second appearance of the season, yielded two hits over the final inning for the Engineers as she threw 23 pitches – 15 of which were strikes. Simmons starter Tori Gomes gave up eight runs (all earned), ten hits and three walks over four and one-third innings this afternoon in the nightcap of the twinbill for the Sharks.

UP NEXT:

- Both teams return to action on Wednesday, April 19. MIT (20-4) welcomes Tufts University for a non-conference doubleheader at 3:00 p.m., while Simmons (9-18) heads to Saint Joseph's (Me.) for a GNAC twinbill beginning at 4:00 p.m.

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