Boston University came into Tuesday’s matchup against Boston College softball with 22 straight wins—one more win than the Eagles have earned all season. The Terriers entered the game looking to earn one more victory to tie their program record of 43 wins.
And they did just that, shutting BC out 11–0 in the Battle of Comm Ave.
Before the top of the fifth inning on Tuesday’s matchup, it was a 1–0 game at Harrington Athletics Village—the Terriers (43–7, 12–0 Patriot) had only scored one run off BC (21–25, 3–15 Atlantic Coast) starting pitcher Abby Dunning. Things took a turn, however, as the Terriers scored 10 runs off three BC pitchers in the top of the fifth alone to run-rule BC 11–0.
The Eagles have not defeated BU since 2018.
“We talked about how we are battle tested—we face the best hitters in the country, we face the best pitchers in the country, some of the best teams in the country,” BC head coach Amy Kvilhaug said. “And you know, we’re ready to rock so it should be a competitive matchup. And just a very big disappointment in how we responded.”
In the top of the first inning, after a walk and a single, BU’s Caitlin Coker hit an RBI single that scored Lauren Keleher. But from there, the Eagles stopped the Terriers from generating any more offense. In the bottom of the first, BU silenced BC’s batters three up, three down.
The second, third, and fourth innings were relatively actionless. In both the bottom of the third and fourth innings, only three BC batters stepped up to the plate. The maximum number of hitters that came up to the plate for either team was four through those three innings. Dunning finished the game with three strikeouts and Boaz hit the low strike zone all game.
“We had an umpire who was giving the low strike today,” Kvilhaug said. “That’s [Boaz’s] strength. And so I think it all kind of played a role. It kind of took us out of our game plan a little bit in the way of being selective, but to her credit, she made the pitches. She made some good pitches.”
Last season, Boaz was named the Patriot League’s 2022 Pitcher of the Year. Her pitching, and BU’s defense, helped stifle the Eagles’ offense. BC’s lack of defense, however, led to its demise.
The top of the fifth inning started with Dunning on the mound. Keleher was the first baserunner of the inning after tallying a walk. Next, Kayla Roncin, the 2022 Patriot League Softball Player of the Year, hit an RBI double, bringing Keheler home. After Coker punched an RBI double to make the score 3–0, Susannah Anderson replaced Dunning.
But a pitching change didn’t alleviate the Eagles’ defensive struggles. Anderson gave up two singles in a row, and a fielding error by Abigail Knight resulted in three more runs.
“[Anderson] gives you a lot of ground balls, so you know, you’re forced to have to make three actions—field, throw, and the person has to receive,” Kvilhaug said. “So three things have to go right with the ground ball.”
Roncin stepped up to the plate with the bases loaded after Anderson allowed two more singles and a walk, and hit a grand slam, making it 11–0 and putting the Eagles away for good. Roncin’s four-hit day was just a glimpse into a season in which she’s dominated all year long, hitting .448 in 172 at-bats with 45 total RBIs. Sofia Earle then relieved Anderson.
“It took her a little bit to get settled in,” Kvilhaug said. “And you know, it’s a good hitting team. They got on all of her stuff.”
Earle closed out the inning and earned one out, just enough to end the 10-run top of the fifth.
“Really no aspect of our game showed up today,” Kvilhaug said. “We didn’t hit, we didn’t play defense, and we did not judge well.”