UMass softball swept by St. Joseph’s

By Adam Aucoin

(Robert Rigo/Daily Collegian)
(Robert Rigo/Daily Collegian)

A hopeful Massachusetts softball team left Saint Joseph’s disappointed after dropping all three Atlantic-10 games this weekend.

UMass (5-15, 1-5 A-10) was confident coming into the series following a convincing win against George Mason, but couldn’t translate that success to the weekend.

UMass lost both games in Sunday’s double-header by the fifth-inning mercy rule, dropping the first contest 10-2 and the nightcap 12-2.

The story of the weekend was St. Joe’s ability to score runs in bunches, which was on display Sunday afternoon.

The Hawks exploded for seven runs in the fifth inning. In the second game, St. Joe’s pounced early and put up nine in the second inning.

The Hawks (19-6, 5-0 A-10) had no trouble hitting UMass pitching in this series. They were led by senior first baseman Ashley Alden, who hit two home runs in the series. As a team, St. Joe’s belted seven home runs on the weekend and outscored the Minutewomen 36-9.

Nikki Alden (Ashley’s younger sister), middle infielder Nicole Palase and infielder Brandi Harknessm were among the other Hawks who contributed to the offensive outburst.

On the mound, St. Joe’s was just as strong. Freshman standout Madison Clarke tossed two complete games on the weekend, giving up five and two runs, respectively. Clarke’s record now stands at 14-2 on the season. Nikki Alden had a complete game of her own in the series finale.

The Minutewomen weren’t able to find their groove offensively in the series, mustering 13 hits in the three-game set.

Senior shortstop Quianna Diaz-Patterson remained hot at the plate with two multi-hit games and a home run, putting her in the team lead with five for the season. Freshman Gianna Hathaway homered twice in the series.

UMass coach Kristi Stefanoni was unable to be reached for comment on the series.

The Minutewomen will look to right the ship when they take on Connecticut on Tuesday at 4 p.m. in their home opener.

Adam Aucoin can be reached at [email protected][liveblog]