Sailfish Sweep a Pair from Northwood on Sunny Saturday Afternoon

Written By: Michael Brown, PBA Sports Information Director

Erica Walters (Pictured) Caught Both Ends of the Double-Header Sweep Against Northwood University on Saturday Afternoon. Photo Courtesy of: Lori Richards. Erica Walters (Pictured) Caught Both Ends of the Double-Header Sweep Against Northwood University on Saturday Afternoon. Photo Courtesy of: Lori Richards.

Box Score

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla.- After a ten day layoff from game action, the Palm Beach Atlantic University softball team got back into the swing of things on Saturday afternoon as they traveled across town to take on rival Northwood University for a pair of games at NU’s Alumni Field. After squeaking by with 1-0 win in the opener, the Sailfish bats finally came to life late in game two and broke it open for a 8-2 victory and double-header sweep.

Palm Beach Atlantic improves to 17-7 on the season while NU drops to 2-16-1 on the year.

Senior right-handers Ashley Jones (10-5) and Heather Laird (6-0) did a solid job each inside the pitcher’s circle with Jones managing the shutout in game one and Laird following with a complete game victory in game two.

In the opener, the game was scoreless into the top of the sixth inning as Seahawks pitcher Michelle Crompton kept the Sailfish hitters off balance and off the scoreboard as did Jones against the NU lineup. The Sailfish finally broke through in the top of the sixth as junior Caitlin Bouschet smacked a one-out double then came home to score on a two-out double from Cassady Faircloth on a long-drive that nearly exited the stadium for a homerun.

NU reliever Judy Godfrey would be called upon out of the Northwood bullpen and shut things down from there to give NU a chance with two innings left.

Jones would have none of that as she escaped a two-on nobody out situation in the bottom of the sixth then retired the side in order in the seventh inning to earn her tenth victory of the season. Jones finished with the shutout, allowing only four hits, one walk, and struck out 12 batters.

Crompton received the tough luck loss as she drops to 0-6 on the season despite allowing only three hits and one run in 5.2 innings while striking out one and walking one.

In the second game, the Sailfish jumped on the board in the first inning with a run in the first inning on a double from Candace Horton that scored Natalia Ojeda who led off the game with a single.

NU would fire back for two runs and take the lead in the bottom of the second inning when Kayla Saastamoinen registered a bases-loaded single that plated two runs as the Seahawks took over the lead at 2-1.

The Sailfish would answer the call in the top of the fourth inning and bring in the tying run as Mari Stokes doubled to leadoff the inning, moved to third-base on a sacrifice bunt from Erica Walters, then came sprinting home on a squeeze bunt single from Dani Perrotti.

PBA would take the lead for good in the top of the sixth inning as Walters delivered an RBI double that scored Faircloth as PBA forged ahead 3-2.

The Blue and White made the game out of reach in the seventh inning when they plated five runs to expand their winning margin to 8-2. Horton posted a RBI single in the inning as did Faircloth while Stokes added in a big double to the fence that plated another. Two Seahawks errors also compounded the inning that saw the Fish send nine batters to the plate.

Laird closed out the win with a perfect seventh frame as she finished with six strikeouts while allowing two runs on four hits and three walks.

Macy Morgan drew the start and unfortunately for the Hawks endured the loss as she allowed seven hits, three runs, and one walk. Godfrey came on in relief and allowed five runs (three earned) on four hits with a walk and a strikeout.

Moving to the leadoff spot for the first time this season, Ojeda excelled with a 2-for-4 performance for PBA in game two with a run scored. Horton, Stokes, and Walters all added in two hits apiece with Stokes and Faircloth scoring two runs each.

Palm Beach Atlantic will next suit up on Wednesday, March 24th as they will welcome in Nova Southeastern University for a 5 p.m. double-header at Palm Beach Gardens High School. The NSU double-header begins a six game homestand for the Fish with eight out of the next ten games to be played at home.

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