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No. 7 Tufts completes sweep of softball, 8-4 and 9-0

MEDFORD, Mass. -- No. 7 nationally ranked Tufts proved to be an offensive juggernaut Saturday afternoon at Spicer Field, belting six home runs and scoring 17 runs on 20 hits to win both games of a doubleheader, 8-4 and 9-0, against the Bates softball team.

The pair of wins completed a three-game sweep over the Bobcats, moving Tufts to 3-0 in NESCAC East Division play and 16-1 on the season. Bates dropped to 4-7 overall and 0-3 in the division.

Five different players went yard for Tufts in the 8-4 opener, and sophomore All-American Allyson Fournier slammed the door shut with a no-hit shutout in the Jumbos' 9-0 win to close out the day.

Fournier struck out 11 batters over five innings without issuing a free pass, and was an error away from a perfect game.

Michelle Cooprider blasted a three-run home run in the opener and Kayla Holland added a three-run bomb in the second game to power the Jumbo offense.

Sara Hedtler went 5 for 7 on the day, while Jo Clair belted her team-leading fifth home run to go along with a double, driving in a pair of runs while scoring three. Abby Curran launched the first home run of her career and Emily Beinecke and Kris Parr each added solo home runs.

In game one, Aly Moskowitz pitched six strong innings to get the win and Erica County with a perfect seventh closed out the opener.

The Jumbos' long ball outweighed the Bobcats' small ball, as Tufts clubbed five home runs en route to an 8-4 game-one win. Moskowitz allowed four runs on six hits over six innings, striking out two, for the win.

Clair got the Jumbos on the board in the first inning, getting on base after taking a fastball to the elbow and scoring on an error.

Tufts broke the game open in the second, starting with Curran who went opposite field for her first career round-tripper. Christian Raso and Hedtler followed with back-to-back singles before Cooprider delivered a towering three-run home run to put the Jumbos up 4-0.

Bates scored a run on singles by senior Mary Lewis (Gardiner, Maine) and senior Caroline Gattuso (North Reading, Mass.) in the third. An inning later, though, Clair and Beinecke blasted back-to-back home runs to extend the lead to 7-1.

The Bobcats rallied in the sixth, scoring three runs to close the game to 7-4 as first-years Alex Eliopoulos (Akron, Ohio) and Karen Lockhart (East Greenwich, R.I.) both had RBI singles. Parr responded in the bottom half of the inning with the Jumbos' fifth home run of the game to push the lead back to four.

Sophomore Kelsey Freedman (Falmouth, Maine) took the loss for Bates, allowing 10 hits and eight runs (seven earned) with four strikeouts and two walks in six innings.

The story of Game 2 was Fournier, who began the day with 65 strikeouts in just 35.2 innings pitched and added 11 more before it was over.

The Bobcats led off the second game with Lewis reaching on an infield error. It would be Bates' last base runner of the day as Fournier struck out the next three batters and didn't look back.

Hedtler led off the Tufts first with a double and Cooprider followed with an infield single. The Bobcats cut down the lead runner at third base on back-to-back fielder's choices, and appeared close to getting out of a jam with two outs and a 1 and 2 count on Holland. But the junior blasted the next pitch she saw deep over the centerfield wall, putting the Jumbos up 3-0.

Tufts added three more runs in the second, with Clair delivering an RBI double and three more in the third as Fournier continued to mow down the Bobcats, in the fourth no-hitter of her young career.

Bates plays next at Colby on Friday at 4pm, before hosting the Mules in a doubleheader on Saturday at 12pm.

Game 1 Box Score: Tufts 8, Bates 4

Game 2 Box Score: Tufts 9, Bates 0