CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – Lesley took both ends of a double-dip with Becker College this afternoon at Buckingham Field to improve to 19-17 on the season and 15-1 in New England Collegiate Conference play. With the losses, Becker falls to 18-12 on the season and 12-4 in the NECC. Game one was an offensive explosion as the two teams combined for 27 hits in a 12-8 win for the Lynx while game two was the polar opposite as Lesley starter Nicole Mercurio (Wakefield, Mass.) held on to earn her ninth win of the season in a 4-1 pitcher's duel.
After trailing 2-1 in the bottom of the third in the opener, the Lynx pushed three runners across the plate to take a 4-2 lead. Junior Maria Nazzaro (North Reading, Mass.) led off the inning with a double down the left field line and came around on an infield error two batters later. Later in the inning, the Lynx capitalized on another Hawks miscue that allowed senior Rian Powers (Portland, Me.) and junior Allison Fountain (Cheshire, Conn.) to cross the plate.
The Lynx took advantage of two more Becker errors in the bottom of the fourth to hand up another three runs.
Becker would add a run in the top of the fifth when senior catcher Talan Barron (Methuen, Mass.) led off the inning with a solo home run to deep left field. The Hawks followed that up with a single by Megan Cordon (Watertown, Conn.) and a double by Megan Bolduc (Dover, N.H.) and loaded the bases with no outs. Lynx reliever Nicole Mercurio (Wakefield, Mass.) came in and got two ground ball outs and a strikeout to get out of the inning without allowing another run.
Lesley answered the Becker run with two more of their own in the bottom of the fifth. The Lynx took a turn loading the bases with no outs after Angela Mukai (Amherst, N.H.) reached on an error and Mercurio and Jodee Doka (Sacramento, Calif.) each singled. Freshman Sydney Thayer (Reading, Mass.) beat out an infield single to knock in the first run of the inning while senior Emily Mangiaratti (Amherst, Mass.) drew a bases loaded walk to put the Lynx up to what seemed to be a commanding 9-3 lead.
The Becker bats came alive in the top of the sixth as they strung together six consecutive singles before recording an out. Baran singled to left to knock in a run while Bolduc drove in two with a single to center. The Hawks got one more across on a when Victoria Horning (Riverview, Fla.) reached on a fielder's choice that allowed Cordon to cross the plate. Becker cut the Lesley lead to just one when after Harning stole second and the throw got away, allowing Bolduc to score.
The Lynx regained control in the bottom half of the inning when Thayer blasted the first home run of her collegiate career deep over the left field fence. The three-run shot brought home Mercurio and Doka who both reached with two outs in the inning, and Lesley held on for the 12-8 victory.
Thayer, Nazzaro, and Fountain all had two hits and scored two runs to lead the Lynx attack while Doka finished 1-3 with two runs scored.
Cordon went 4-5 at the dish while Barron and Jessica Wheelahan (Watertown, Conn.) each had three hits and two RBI.
After the teams combined for 27 hits in the opener, starters Cordon and Mercurio kept the offenses at bay in the nightcap, allowing just 12 combined hits as the Lynx hung on for a 4-1 victory.
Mercurio earned her ninth win of the season as she went the distance for the Lynx, scattering five hits and striking out three while allowing just the one run.
Cordon also registered a complete game, giving up seven hits, four runs, and striking out three for the Hawks.
Becker struck first in the top of the third to take a 1-0 lead. Freshman Jaclyn Orangio (Maynard, Mass.) led the inning off with a bunt single, stole second, moved to third on an error, and scored on a Barron sacrifice fly to left field.
The Lynx answered in the bottom of the fourth as Saron led off with a double to the left-center gap before Fountain drove a two-run homer to left field to give the Lynx a 2-1 advantage. The drive was Fountain's team-leading third round-tripper of the season.
Lesley kept the pressure on as Mukai reached on an infield single, moved to second after Mercurio was hit by a pitch, and scored on a Doka single down the left field line.
The Hawks threatened in the top of the fifth after loading the bases on three consecutive walks with two outs, but Mercurio got a big strikeout to get out of the inning unscathed.
The Lynx added an insurance run in the fifth to complete the sweep with a 4-1 game two win.
Mangiaratti finished the nightcap going 1-3 with a run scored while Fountain knocked in two and also scored a run for the Lynx.
Orangio went 2-4 with a run scored from the lead-off spot for the Hawks while Wheelahan, Cordon, and Melissa Rhodes (Mendon, Mass.) all picked up a hit in the loss.
Both teams will wrap up their regular season on Saturday. Lesley will travel to Daniel Webster College for a doubleheader starting at 12:00p while Becker will play host to Bay Path College for two.