LEWISTON, Maine – University of Maine at Farmington freshman Katie Clark led the Beavers with a 4-for-6 effort at the plate as UMF dropped a pair of non-conference softball games at Bates College, 9-3 and 5-3, Thursday afternoon at Lafayette Street Field.
UMaine-Farmington evened its record at 4-4 with the two losses, while Bates improved to 5-12.
The Bobcats posted five runs in the bottom of the first inning, keyed by Kira Shaikh's two-run home run down the left field line. Bates extended its lead to 6-0 in the fourth on Karen Lockhart's RBI single through the right side.
The Beavers rallied with three runs in the top of the fifth, cutting the Bobcat lead in half, 6-3. Clark and Amy Jones reached on singles, and Kennadi Grover drew a walk to load up the bases with none out. The next two Farmington batters struck out and fouled out, and Meryl Bond plated all three base runners with a triple into center field.
Unfortunately, Bates answered with three runs of its own in the bottom half of the fifth on a walk and a wild pitch issued to Bobcat batters with the bases loaded, followed by a single up the middle by Molly Brown.
Withee joined Clark with a pair of hits for the Beavers in game one. Shaikh plated three runs, while Lockhart, Alex Eliopoulos, and Alayna Garbarino each had a pair of hits.
UMF starter Courtney Fowler allowed nine earned runs on 12 hits in the loss, while Bates' Brenna Callahan fanned five Farmington batters and gave up three earned runs on nine hits in the win.
After falling behind 3-1 in game two, UMaine-Farmington tied things up with Bates at 3-3 in the top of the fifth on Clark's two-run single down the right field line that scored Bond and Cassidy Morrow. Morrow led off the inning with a single up the middle, and Bond singled into center to put the runners at first and second. Shelby Bryant sacrificed both runners into scoring position with her bunt down toward third.
Bates regained the lead in the bottom of the fifth when the Beavers committed two errors on Kelsey Freedman's single, allowing her to get all the way around the base paths and cross for a 4-3 Bobcat lead. The Bobcats' lead became 5-3 in the sixth on Abigail Abbott's two-out RBI single to left center.
Shaikh belted a two-run home run for the Bobcats in the second inning, her second of the day. She also hit a two-run homer in the first inning of game one.
Kristen Manzo gave up 11 hits and three earned runs in the game two loss for the Beavers. Freedman also gave up three earned runs in the win, on seven hits with four strikeouts.
UMaine-Farmington returns to North Atlantic Conference play on Friday, April 18, when it faces Thomas College at 3:00 p.m. Bates will face Tufts University on Friday in the first game of a three-game set.