Softball claims series win over SNHU with 9-0 victory

MANCHESTER, N.H. – Junior Jordan O'Connor drove in four runs with a pair of doubles and sophomore Morgan Perry threw her third-straight shutout in the circle to lead the Saint Anselm College softball team to a 9-0 victory over crosstown-rival Southern New Hampshire University in five innings on Wednesday at South Athletic Fields.

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Perry limited Southern New Hampshire (25-8, 8-5 NE10) to two baserunners and struck out four in the abbreviated shutout for Saint Anselm (24-9-1, 11-3-1 NE10), which claimed two Queen City Cup points by winning the deciding game of the series. The Hawks lead the Penmen, 19-13, in the intra-city competition.

In addition to O'Connor's career-high four RBI, Shannon Colson was 1-for-3 with two runs and two RBI, Megan Murrell drove in two runs and Amanda Bickford, Maggie Murphy and Erin Thompson all scored twice. Shay Sauvageau's one-out double in the fourth was the lone hit the Penmen mustered off Perry.

Murrell's two RBI gave her 92 for her career, moving her into sole possession of third all-time at Saint Anselm. Perry's 14 wins and four shutouts this season are both tied for eighth-most in program history for a single season, while her four strikeouts gave her an even 100 for the season. Perry has allowed just five hits in 19 innings over her three-straight shutouts while striking out 18 batters.

Perry and Sarah Lavallee combined to allow just two baserunners through the first two innings before Saint Anselm got to Lavallee in the third. Singles by Michaela Kane, Murphy and Thompson filled the bases with one away to start a four-run inning. Murrell plated the first run with a sacrifice fly to deep left, Colson followed with a RBI single up the middle and O'Connor delivered a two-run double over the left fielder's head to chase Lavallee from the circle.

Saint Anselm posted its second-straight big inning in the fourth, plating five unearned runs on just one hit off Maddy Barone. After the Hawks loaded the bases on a walk, sacrifice bunt, error and another walk, Thompson hit a grounder to second and pinch runner Kat Stackrow beat the throw home for the first run of the inning. Murrell, the next batter, drew a bases-loaded walk and Colson reached on a fielder's choice to drive in another run, before O'Connor hit her second two-run double of the game to the gap in left center to make it 9-0.

Perry set down the first eight Penmen batters before walking Katie Horiuchi with two gone in the third. Sauvageau's double in the fourth was followed by a line-drive double play and Perry had a pair of strikeouts in a 1-2-3 fifth to seal the victory.

Saint Anselm's 24 victories this season are the team's most since head coach Jill Gagnon's first season of 2014 when the Hawks finished 27-14.

The Hawks travel to Assumption this weekend for three games against the Greyhounds, starting with a doubleheader on Saturday, Apr. 14 with game one starting at 12:30 p.m.