For a stretch in the middle of March, it seemed like Boston College softball could do no wrong at the plate. The Eagles scored a combined 27 runs across their games against Bryant, UMass, and UMass Lowell, and they won all three games by run rule.
Just four days have passed since the last game of that stretch—a 9-1 drubbing of UMass Lowell—but it might as well be an eternity for a BC offense that cannot buy a hit at the moment.
BC’s woes at the plate were on full display in its Sunday afternoon doubleheader against Stony Brook (9-5, 0-0 America East), as the Eagles (5-10, 1-4 Atlantic Coast) managed just one run and nine hits across the two games. The Seawolves came away with a 4-1 win in the first game and blanked the Eagles 3-0 in the second.
BC struggled at the plate in its second bout against the Seawolves, notching just three hits and a walk against Stony Brook pitcher Melissa Rahrich. None of the baserunners came in the same frame, and the Eagles never threatened to score.
CC Cook was boom or bust on the hill for BC, allowing 11 hits and two walks while also striking out a career-best 11 batters. She frequently performed at her best when the Eagles needed it most, as she closed out innings with runners in scoring position three times without allowing a run in that span.
Stony Brook finally broke the deadlock in the top of the fifth as the Seawolves loaded the bases on a trio of singles, and cleanup hitter Nicole McCarvill brought one home with a single. Despite giving up one run, Cook came up clutch for BC again and struck out the next two batters to limit the damage.
Cook put down the Seawolves 1-2-3 in the sixth, but Stony Brook padded its lead in the seventh with a pair of runs. Leadoff hitter Jourdin Hering took Cook over the right-field wall, and then the Seawolves pieced together another run with two singles and an error from shortstop Djhane Valido.
Cook has been a standout starter for the Eagles this season, but both teams had their ace pitchers in the circle for the entirety of the first game. BC hurler Susannah Anderson took on Dawn Bodrug in a pitchers’ battle. While the Seawolves were comfortable at the plate, the Eagles looked tense and only managed six hits.
After a quiet first inning, Gianna Boccagno stepped up to the plate in the bottom of the second with two outs. Boccagno rocketed a pitch from Bodrug over the left-field wall, giving the Eagles a 1-0 lead. Boccagno’s homer was the only run on the board until the top of the fourth when the Seawolves attacked back with a two-run rally.
But the Eagles couldn’t capitalize on the momentum from Boccagno’s homer, ending the bottom of the second with a runner on base. In the next inning, the Eagles still couldn’t get their bats going, and the frame ended with three back-to-back strikeouts from Bodrug, who finished with 12 strikeouts.
The Seawolves capitalized on the Eagles’ struggles in the field to take the lead in the top of the fourth. With runners on second and third, Riley Craig placed a bunt just in between BC’s third baseman and the pitching circle to score McCarvill.
The damage didn’t stop there. With two outs and runners on first and third, Anderson pitched a ball in the dirt past Boccagno, and Stony Brook’s runner on third took advantage of the opening and stole home plate, giving the Seawolves a 2-1 lead.
BC’s Emme Martinez was a bright spot in game one, as she notched three hits and played well in the field.
With two runners on base and only one out in the top of the third, the Seawolves crushed two ground balls at Martinez, but she didn’t let anything past her, ending the inning with two groundouts.
The Seawolves maintained a narrow 2-1 lead for most of the game until the Eagles lost steam in the top of the seventh. With bases loaded and one out, Jordyn Nowakowski hit a line drive to right-center field, bringing in two of her teammates from second and third base.
The Eagles showed a promising start in the bottom of the seventh when Jenna Ergle hit a double off the first pitch of the inning. Just like after Boccagno’s homer, the rest of the lineup failed to capitalize off the momentum, and the Eagles went down quietly to end the game.
Despite the lackluster performance, BC can take comfort that its difficulties against Bodrug have been shared by plenty of other opponents during her time in college softball. She held an incredible 0.74 ERA in 2020 and sits at 1.98 this season.
Featured Image by Kristian Lamarre / Heights Staff