UMass softball dominated by Boston College in home opener Wednesday

Minutewomen allowed 11 runs in five innings

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Kago Motsoma / Daily Collegian

By Pedro Gray Soares, Collegian Staff

Without ever finding a way to slow down Boston College, the Massachusetts softball team fell in its home opener on Wednesday by mercy rule, 11-0.

“[BC is] a good team, you know, we have more fight in us,” UMass (7-15, 2-0 Atlantic 10) head coach Danielle Henderson said. “Just Sunday against [Rhode Island] we had fantastic defense that kept us in the game, and today we just got a little passive at moments, so we couldn’t come up with plays when we needed them.”

UMass’ defense allowed 11 runs and 13 hits in four innings, and all of the runs came home between the second and fourth. The Eagles (14-11, 2-4 Atlantic Coast Conference) took advantage of almost every chance they had to score and only left five runners on base by the end of the game.

It was a solid day at the plate for the Eagles. They tallied three doubles, one triple and a homerun. Darien McDonough turned on a pitch and sent it over the right field wall for a 3-run homer in the top of the fourth. McDonough’s blast was the dagger for the Minutewomen. It made the game 10-0 and set up BC to mercy rule (an 8-run lead by the fifth inning) its rivals.

UMass’ Julianne Bolton had a tough day on the mound. Of the 23 batters she faced, Bolton struck out three over the span of her three and one third innings of work. Despite her performance against BC, Henderson is optimistic of the direction in which her pitching is trending.

“[Bolton] keeps getting better and better,” Henderson said. “She’s young and starting to come into her own and feel comfortable. She’s thrown some good pitches, and she’s just going to keep trending up for us.”

Bolton was relieved by Jessie DiPasquale after allowing five runs, five hits and two walks in the fourth inning, including the homerun by McDonough.

“I thought [Bolton] was doing a good job and then when they were able to hit the homerun, it’s not fair to keep the pitcher out there,” Henderson said. “You’ve got to change it up.”

With DiPasquale on the mound, the Minutewomen held BC to its first scoreless inning since the top of the first. DiPasquale allowed no runs and no hits, and UMass made no errors.

After a scoreless start to the game in the first inning, BC quickly got the ball rolling with three hits in the top of the second. With two outs, Ellie Mataya sent a fly ball to right field for a triple which drove in three runs.

For a moment it seemed like UMass found a way to build momentum in the bottom of the inning to match the Eagles, but it came up empty handed. The momentum shift was considerable. UMass failed to hold the Eagles to less than three runs in innings two through four.

“It’s kind of not a good feeling to get beat like that in your home opener,” Henderson said. “We needed to pick up our defense, I feel like we gave them a lot of opportunities and overall, we should’ve just had a better game.”

UMass travels to Saint Louis for a three-game series starting on Saturday at 1 p.m.

Pedro Gray Soares can be reached at [email protected] and followed on Twitter @P_GraySoares.