UNE’s Abby Lambert Makes contact in the fourth inning Wednesday afternoon.

UNE’s Abby Lambert Makes contact in the fourth inning Wednesday afternoon.

BIDDEFORD — The University of New England softball team split its doubleheader against visiting Plymouth State Wednesday afternoon. UNE took the first game 5-0, while PSU battled back in the seventh inning to take the second game by a 5-3 score.

UNE coach Dan Letellier was happy with his team’s performance overall, as well as the experience that the Nor’easters gained in this tough matchup.

“They performed well I thought. That’s what we talked about – we didn’t really get the clutch hits and left a few runners on base, but they put the ball in play. It was good for them to experience this, they just kept attacking. We had to tell them to keep attacking (Plymouth’s) pitchers,” said Letellier.

Katelyn Austin took the mound for UNE in game one and impressed, pitching four shutout innings and allowing only two hits while earning three strikeouts. Sophia Burnham took over for the remaining three innings and also shut out PSU.

Letellier felt his squad’s pitching was the difference in the first game.

“We have a lot of really good pitchers and today Kate was really on. She pitched well, she had a lot of movement on her pitches,” said Letellier.

UNE also got on the board early, thanks to a sacrifice fly to center field from Amanda Vallante to score Avery Alberghini. Andrea Gosper later scored the following inning after hitting a single and working her way home to give the Nor’easters an early 2-0 lead.

The Nor’easters broke open the lead in the sixth inning when Abby Lambert hit a 2-run double into left field and later made it home on a throwing error.

The PSU bats rebounded early in the second game, with Autumn Beyor hitting a lead off single to center in the first and later scoring on an error.

Despite taking the early lead, the Nor’easters settled down and scored two runs in the fourth. Gosper lead the inning off with a triple and later scored on a fielder’s choice. Lauren Jones later hit an RBI double into center to score Melissa Sprague from second base.

UNE added a third run in the sixth when Alberghini scored on a fielder’s choice, making the score 3-1 heading into the final inning.

The PSU offense took off when Avrie Davis hit a single to score two runs and later Katie Kennard hit two more RBIs off a double to give the Pilgrims the 5-3 advantage that was enough to secure the win.

Letellier was disappointed in his team’s seventh inning.

“I just told them that, ‘hey, we have to play a full seven innings. I thought that (Sydnee Bessler’s) pitches were a little flat, but hats off to Plymouth State, they attacked the pitches that were sitting there,” said Letellier. “They never gave up, they kept going at it … these are the games that you want, you want to play in games like this.”

Lambert pitched three innings in game two, giving up one run on two hits, while Sprague pitched two innings allowing no runs and Bessler pitched the final two innings allowing four runs.

Letellier was happy to split the doubleheader.

“We always try to sweep them, but today we didn’t play a bad doubleheader – we played well, we just didn’t get a break for things to go our way. A split is OK as long as we don’t self destruct.”

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