Sports, Spring, Softball

Eagles Top Syracuse With Martinez’s Walk-Off Single

On Tuesday afternoon against Providence, Boston College softball pitcher Susannah Anderson hurled a gem, allowing a lone unearned run while striking out three—but the Eagles’ lineup went cold, and they fell, 1-0. So, on Friday against Syracuse, when Anderson labored through two innings—giving up three runs and needing 41 pitches—it seemed that the freshman was destined for her fourth loss in her last five starts.

Instead, BC’s lineup jolted awake, equalizing in the bottom of the frame. Then, behind five shutout innings of relief from classmate Camryn Dolby and a walkoff single from Emme Martinez, the Eagles registered their first conference win of 2019, beating the visiting Orange, 4-3.

Dolby, who struck out the side against Quinnipiac in an inning of relief on Tuesday, replicated that success against Syracuse (9-17, 1-3 Atlantic Coast). Entering a 3-3 game in the third inning, Dolby retired the first four batters she faced, worked around a leadoff double in the fourth, then fanned six the rest of the way. In the top of the seventh, she ran into command issues, loading the bases via two walks and a hit batsmen, but caught Toni Martin looking at a 1-2 pitch to end the frame.

Martinez and BC’s (9-15, 1-3) hitters made sure not to waste her spotless relief performance. The Orange had leaned on its ace, Alexa Romero, who bounced back from allowing a three-spot in the second inning with four scoreless innings of her own. Romero wasn’t up to par in the bottom of the seventh, though, issuing a leadoff walk to pinch hitter Gianna Randazza—who entered hitting just .208 in 24 at bats on the year.

With a pinch runner in Jules Trevino on first, Lexi DiEmmanuele laced a single to left field. Ellie Mataya struck out, but Martinez strode to the plate and lined a 2-2 pitch through the right side, scoring Trevino and ending the game in the process. It was a crucial walkoff hit for the sophomore, as she was stuck in a 3-for-20 stretch and redeemed herself with her fourth multi-hit game of the year, bumping her average over .300 in the process. Martinez is now second on the team in RBIs (12) and continued to wreak havoc on Syracuse pitching, having gone 3-for-4 with three runs driven in the last time they played on March 31, 2018.

Anderson’s start didn’t get off on the right foot, as she needed a double play to escape a two-on, one-out jam in the first. That only carried over to the second, where she got successive groundouts after a leadoff single but then ran into problems. A walk was followed by an RBI single from Orange third baseman Lailoni Mayfield, and a costly error from Martinez extended the frame. With the bases loaded and two outs, Anderson got ahead of Syracuse’s Alicia Hansen with a first pitch strike, but the Orange’s leading hitter then lined a two-run single through the right side.

Anderson was promptly picked up by her teammates, though, as the Eagles came out and got to Romero in the bottom of the second. Gianna Boccagno drew a leadoff walk, then moved into scoring position with a one-out double from Carlie Sanders. DiEmmanuele made sure not to squander the prime opportunity, bouncing back from a 0-for-3 day against the Friars by bringing in two runs with a single up the middle. Mataya capped the scoring with a sacrifice fly to left, and while DiEmmanuele made a costly baserunning mistake, it ultimately didn’t cost BC.

It was an important win to start the weekend, as BC needs to make the most of this series and next week’s against North Carolina State (16-12, 0-4) to make headway in conference play. A series sweep at the hands of North Carolina last week is understandable—the Tar Heels have won six of seven to start the ACC schedule—but if the Eagles want to continue their streak of 30-win seasons, they’ll have to clean up against the teams around them in the bottom third of the conference.

Featured Image by Celine Lim / Heights Editor

March 23, 2019