Colson sets career steals mark in NE10 sweep of Saint Michael's

COLCHESTER, Vt. – The Saint Anselm College softball team extended its winning streak to eight games with a Northeast-10 Conference doubleheader sweep of Saint Michael's College on Wednesday afternoon at Doc Jacobs Field. The Hawks won the first game by a 6-1 margin while taking the second contest by a 10-0 score in five innings.

Saint Anselm improved to 23-7 overall and 11-1 against NE10 opponents while the Purple Knights fall to 2-20 on the year and 1-11 in league play.

Junior Shannon Colson (Rochester, N.H.) set a personal-best mark in the opening contest with four stolen bases, falling just one theft shy of the single-game team record. She exited the day with 58 career stolen bases, passing Nicole Boucher '14 (56) for the program record.

In game one, sophomore Lauren Washburn (Carmichael, Calif.) extended her hitting streak to nine games while junior Maggie Murphy (Scarborough, Maine) drove in three runs with a two-run blast and later adding a triple. Sophomore pitcher Courtney Fisher (Taunton, Mass.) improved 8-0 on the year and had five strikeouts in four innings of work. Freshman McKenna Smith (Old Town, Maine) had eight strikeouts to pick up her fifth save of the season. Smith came into the contest leading all Division II pitchers in strikeouts per seven innings (11.5).

In the second game, a six-run second inning that was keyed by a two-run home run by sophomore Abbie Murrell (Scarborough, Maine) and a two-run single by freshman Bailey Cain (Wellington, Fla.) helped the Hawks complete the sweep. 

Junior Morgan Perry (Bethany, Conn.) earned her 11th win of the season and sixth shutout by striking out 11 batters and giving up just three hits in the five-inning contest.

Saint Anselm 7, Saint Michael's 1 Box Score

The Hawks struck for two runs in the first inning and three in the second. In the opening frame, Colson began the game with a single before stealing second and third. That led to a triple by Murphy, before Washburn knocked in Murphy to give Saint Anselm a 2-0 lead.

In the second inning, the Hawks scored three runs all with two outs. With sophomore Kat Stackrow (Wynantskill, N.Y.) on second, Colson moved her over to third after reaching on an error. Colson stole second before Murphy loaded the bases with a walk. Washburn cleared the bases after reaching on an error by the right fielder.

Fisher retired the first nine batters she faced and struck out the side in the bottom of the third inning.

Saint Anselm added two more runs in the fourth after Murphy hit her second home run of the season, scoring Colson on the play.

Smith came in relief and got eight of the nine outs she needed by way of the strikeout. The Purple Knights broke up the shutout in the seventh inning on a solo home run by Torie Rathwell. Rathwell also suffered the loss for Saint Michael's allowing seven runs, four of them earned, on five hits and three walks. She finished with three strikeouts.

Saint Anselm 10, Saint Michael's 0 Box Score

The second game was all Saint Anselm. After a scoreless first inning, the Hawks put up six runs in the second frame. Leadoff batter Jordan O'Connor (New Fairfield, Conn.) singled to start the contest, before moving to second on a wild pitch. Murrell drove her in with her third home run of the season.

After sophomore Maddison Leite (Cumberland, R.I.) and Stackrow singled, freshman Kylie Fitzpatrick (Danville, N.H.) loaded the bases by reaching on a walk. Cain singled between first and second, allowing Stackrow and Leite to score. After Cain stole second, Colson grounded out allowing Fitzpatrick to cross the plate, before Murphy grounded out to second to score Cain.

After giving up a double in the second inning, Perry shutdown the next eight batters she faced, including six by strikeout.

Fitzpatrick made it 7-0 in the third inning with a RBI single, scoring Leite, before the Hawks added two runs in the fourth on singles by O'Connor and Murrell.

Perry allowed just one double for the remainder of the game and had four strikeouts to end the last two innings. Sydney Longley suffered the loss for the Purple Knights in game two, allowing six runs on five this and a walk over two innings.

Saint Anselm will host Franklin Pierce University in a makeup game on Thursday, Apr. 11 at 4 p.m. to wrap up the season series with the Ravens.