Despite high hopes for a pair of victories that would allow it to move up in the conference standings, the Boston University softball team fell to the University at Albany in both games of a doubleheader at the BU Softball Field Wednesday afternoon, 8-0 in the first game and 3-0 in the second game.
Even with the shining sun and warm temperatures, the Terriers (17-22-1, 5-6 America East) were unable to score a single run against Albany (30-10, 13-1 America East).
“Albany’s a good team,” said BU coach Kathryn Gleason. “I think they’re well-coached, they played great defense.”
The Terriers dropped the first game 8-0 in a six-inning mercy-rule loss as Albany pitcher Brittany MacFawn shut down BU’s offense, while senior pitchers Whitney Tuthill and Erin Schuppert failed to hold back Albany’s bats as the Terriers snapped their six-game winning streak.
The game remained even at 0-0 until the top of the fourth inning, when an error on a fielder’s choice put two runners on base for Albany third baseman Lauren Alcorn. With one out, Alcorn doubled to center field, plating both runners and putting Albany up 2-0.
Though Schuppert came in for Tuthill with one out in the top of the fifth, she was unable to keep the Great Danes in check, as they scored three runs on four hits and an error, giving Albany a 5-0 lead going into the bottom of the fifth. Just as they had in the previous inning, the Terriers went 1-2-3 against a dominant MacFawn.
“One play never defines the whole game,” Gleason said. “If we have runs on the board and put the ball in play, we hit the ball, then that doesn’t happen, or it doesn’t make that big of an impact.”
Albany added three more runs in a busy sixth inning before BU came up to the plate down 8-0 in the bottom of the sixth, needing to score in order to keep from being mercy-ruled.
With one out, junior center fielder Jayme Mask singled to right before stealing second. A single by freshman Lauren Hynes put runners on first and second for junior third baseman Megan Volpano, who reached base on a fielder’s choice that forced Mask out at third.
An error moved Volpano and Hynes to second and third, respectively, for junior catcher Amy Ekart. With two outs, Ekart flew out to left, ending the game with an 8-0 final score.
Hynes was in the circle for BU in the second game, and despite her strong effort, the Terriers once again struggled offensively against MacFawn, whose dominance in the circle continued in a 3-0 BU loss.
Despite picking up the loss, Hynes allowed only four hits and two earned runs, getting herself out of multiple jams, including a bases-loaded situation that she caused by hitting three batters in the top of the seventh.
“I think the thing that I’m most proud of with Lauren is that she got ahead,” Gleason said. “We’ve been asking her to do that all season and she really got ahead. That put her in a better position. I think [her] composure on the mound has just evolved throughout the season.”
Albany once again got on the board for the first time in the top of the fourth inning, scoring one run against Hynes. The Terriers were unable to respond in the bottom of the frame, as MacFawn struck out the side. She finished the second game with 12 strikeouts.
A one-out single by junior first baseman Chelsea Kehr in the bottom of the fifth was not enough for the Terriers, as the next two batters could not drive her in. After Albany tacked another run on the board in the top of the sixth, BU once again fell 1-2-3 to MacFawn and the Albany defense.
“They seemed to be in every spot we hit the ball,” Gleason said.
Though it loaded the bases, Albany was unable to plate a runner in the top of the seventh, but the Terriers could not get a single runner on base in the bottom of the inning and lost 3-0.
Gleason said she is confident that BU will not be held back by the disappointing doubleheader, as it takes on Bryant University Thursday afternoon.
“The best part about this is that we get another opportunity tomorrow,” Gleason said. “So we’ll come back ready to go tomorrow.”