CASTLETON, Vt. – Tori Swaine knocked in the winning run in the bottom of the fifth with a double to the wall in left-center field to cap a doubleheader sweep for the Castleton University softball team over Middlebury on Monday as the Spartans hosted the Strike Out Cancer Games. Castleton edged the Panthers, 5-4, in the opener before an 11-10 comeback win in the nightcap.
Jamie Boyle finished 3-for-5 on the day with a team-high four RBIs and a home run. Devin Millerick was 4-for-6 with four runs scored, three stolen bases, and an RBI while Swaine finished 3-for-6 with the big double and three RBIs. Also for the Spartans, Calli Van Gorden hit a three-run home run and had a double.
Kylie Wright earned her eighth victory in the circle in game one by tossing a complete game before collecting her second save of the campaign in game two for Castleton (13-16). Emily Harvey pitched 4.1 shutout innings in relief for the Spartans to earn her first career victory. She allowed four hits and four walks but did not allow a run to score.
For Middlebury (12-14), Melanie Mandell led the way offensively with a 4-for-5 day with a home run, double, four runs scored, and two RBIs. Noelle Ruschil and Kaylee Gumm also homered for the Panthers.
The victory in game one for the Spartans broke a 15-game winning streak for Middlebury in the head-to-head series dating back to 2010. It was also the first-ever sweep for the Spartans over the Panthers.
Castleton will return to conference action on Tuesday on the road at UMass Boston. The Spartans will close the regular season on Saturday, as they will host Rhode Island College for Senior Day.
Castleton 5, Middlebury 4
The Spartans struck first in the second when Boyle lined a leadoff homer just inside the pole in left. Then, Middlebury took the lead on Mandell's no-doubt two-run jack to left-center.
The Spartans regained the one-run advantage in the second on a Miranda Fish sacrifice fly and an RBI single by Boyle on a grounder through the left side.
Millerick made it 4-1 in the fifth on a run-scoring double before Boyle hit a sacrifice fly.
Ruschil got it back to one again with a two-run homer in the sixth, and a single one batter later put the tying run on base, but Wright got a strikeout to get out of it. Olivia Bravo's one-out double in the seventh was stranded as Wright retired the final two batters to seal the victory.
Castleton 11, Middlebury 10
Middlebury scored six runs in the top of the first inning highlighted by a two-run homer from Gromm and two-run double down the left field line by Sara Marlino.
Castleton got four back in the bottom of the frame. Kate LaPan and Millerick walked to open the frame before Van Gorden cleared the fence in left two batters later. Machaila Arjavich had a two-out run-scoring single to cut the deficit to two.
The Panthers answered with four of their own to take back the six-run cushion, but the Spartans chipped back with three each in the second and third to tie the game at 10. Swaine had a two-run single down the line in left before Boyle notched her second sacrifice fly of the afternoon in the second inning. The Spartans tied it in the third thanks to consecutive wild pitches with two outs.
Millerick was the catalyst of the fifth when she smacked a leadoff single through the left side. After reliever and game one starter, Irene Mangiotta, got two outs, Swaine hit the fence on the fly to score Millerick from second after she swiped it.
An infield throwing error allowed the leadoff batter to reach in the seventh. Wright earned her second save of the campaign by inducing three straight groundouts to complete the sweep and hold off darkness.