Atkocaitis a triples threat

FITCHBURG – The Fitchburg State University softball team dropped a pair of games to the Owls of Westfield State University in Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference (MASCAC) action this afternoon at Coolidge Park, dropping the opening contest, 3-2 before suffering a tough 6-2 setback in the night cap.

Westfield State 3, Fitchburg State 2 (Gm 1)
Fitchburg State opened the scoring in the bottom of the second as junior Emily Comtois singled, moved to second on wild pitch and scored on a double down the left field line by sophomore Michelle LeBlanc for the 1-0 advantage.
Westfield State took the lead in the top half of the sixth when senior Julia Sullivan drew a lead-off walk, advanced to second on a base hit from classmate Erika Gouin and scored on a single to right off the bat of junior Angelica Banning before senior Sydney Elzold plated Banning and Gouin for the 3-1 edge.


The Falcons batted back in the bottom of the seventh as LeBlanc launched her second home run on the season over the left field fence to cut the lead to 3-2, but Westfield State hurler Sarah Eugenio got the next two hitters to foul out, resulting in the 3-2 game one final.
Fitchburg State was paced by LeBlanc, who went 2-for-3 with a double, a home run, one run scored and two RBI, while Comtois, freshman Mikayla Harnois and sophomore Maddie Medina added one hit each for the Falcons.
For Westfield State, Banning hit a perfect 3-for-3 at the dish with one run scored and one RBI, while Ezold finished 1-for-2 with a pair of RBI.
In the circle, senior Galen Kerr took the loss for the Green and Gold, allowing three runs on seven hits with seven K’s in the complete game effort, while Eugenio picked up the win for the Owls, giving up two runs on five hits with 3 K’s in seven innings of work.

Westfield State 6, Fitchburg State 2 (Gm 2)
In game two, the Falcons offense was led by senior Jessalynne Brown, who hit 1-for-3 with an RBI, while classmate Tori Cyrus finished 1-for-4 with a double and one run scored. For the Owls, senior Liz Kelly hit 4-for-5 with a triple, three runs scored and two RBI, while junior Maddy Atkocatis (Westfield) went 2-for-4 with a triple and two runs batted in.
On the mound, sophomore Kaylee Sylvestre suffered the setback for Fitchburg State, yielding three runs on 11 hits with four K’s in five innings of work, while Sullivan collected the win for Westfield State, allowing two runs on seven hits with three strikeouts in the complete game effort.
Westfield State grabbed the lead in the top of the first as Kelly singled to right center, moved to second a single off the bat of Sullivan and crossed the plate following a single up the middle by Atkocatis to make the score 1-0.
The Owls doubled their advantage (2-0) in the top of the third when Kelly singled down the left field line, advanced to second on base hit off the bat of Sullivan and scored on fielder’s choice and throwing miscue.
Fitchburg State cut into the deficit in the bottom half of the third as Sylvestre singled down the left field line, moved to third on base hit to right center by sophomore Damari Grossi and scored off a double steal to cut the lead to 2-1.
With the score 3-1, Westfield State upped its lead in the top of the sixth when Kelly tripled to right and scored on a fielding miscue, while Atkocatis tripled home Sullivan later in the frame for the 6-1 advantage. The triple for Atkocaitis was her fourth of the season and 19th of her career, to set a school record, passing Jackie Mason ’09.
The Falcons responded in the bottom of the sixth as Cyrus doubled into the right center field gap and came around to score on a single from Brown, resulting in the 6-2, game two final. Following the two games, the Fitchburg State University softball team honored four seniors playing in their final regular season. The seniors are #3 Tori Cyrus, #7 Galen Kerr, #10 Katie Gildea and #14 Jessalynne Brown.
Fitchburg State (11-14, 6-4 MASCAC) returns to action on Tuesday as it hosts the Lancers of Worcester State University for a conference double header, starting at 3:30 PM. Westfield State (13-16, 7-3 MASCAC) will host MCLA for a MASCAC twin billing on Tuesday, starting at 2:00 PM.
– Story courtesy Fitchburg Sports/Westfield State Sports

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