PLEASANTVILLE, N.Y. – Freshman catcher/designated player Ella Hillier (Tualitin, Ore./Tualitin HS) had five hits and five RBI, and junior first baseman Gabby Casalino (Dix Hills, N.Y../Half Hollow Hills West HS) provided three hits and three RBI, as Bentley University softball swept Pace University, 7-6 (8 innings) and 8-7, in Northeast-10 Conference action Saturday afternoon at the Pace Softball Field.
The Falcons, who broke a tie in the final innings of both games, improved to 6-11 overall and 5-3 in their last eight games. Pace dropped to 3-5 overall and 0-2 NE10.
In the nightcap, Bentley broke a 7-7 deadlock with an unearned run in the sixth. With pinch-runner Montana Joyce (Marblehead, Mass./Marblehead HS) on first, Casalino singled to right. The ball was misplayed, allowing Joyce to race home with the tie-breaking run.
Bentley started fast in game two, erupting for five runs in the first. Following an RBI double by junior shortstop Julie Slavin (Rocky Hill, Conn./Rocky Hill HS), Hillier had an RBI single, freshman pitcher Elise Pereira (Plainville, Mass./King Philip Reg. HS) followed with a two-run double and Casalino drove in the fifth run with a double down the left field line.
Pace battled back with four runs in the third to draw within one, 6-5, and tied the game with two runs in the bottom of the fifth.
Bentley's 11-hit attack included two apiece from Slavin, Hillier and Casalino. Slavin and junior left fielder Stacey Korotsky (Raynham, Mass./Bridgewater-Raynham HS) both scored twice and Hillier and Pereira each had a pair of RBI.
Sophomore Ashley Keegan (Pittsfield, Mass./Taconic HS) earned the win, her fourth in as many decisions this season, with 4.1 innings of relief. She gave up three hits and two unearned runs.
In the opener, after the Setters struck for two in the sixth and two more in the seventh to erase a 6-2 Bentley lead, the Falcons picked up the game-winner in the top of the eighth. Junior second baseman Kaileigh Serafini (Schenectady, N.Y./Schenectady HS) led off with a single, moved to third on a walk and a sacrifice and scored on Slavin's ground out to short.
Casalino hit her first career home run, with one on, in the fifth to stake the Falcons to a 3-2 lead and the Falcons followed with a three-run sixth, all the runs scoring on a bases-loaded double to right center by Hillier.
Hillier's two-bagger was part of a 3-for-5 game for the freshman. Bentley's eight hits also included two from Serafini.
The win went to junior reliever Kayleigh Fitzpatrick (East Hampstead, N.H./Timberlane Reg. HS). After giving up a game-tying double to the first batter she faced in the seven, she retired five of the final six Setters to step to the plate.
Bentley, 2-0 in NE10 games, will remain on the road for a noon doubleheader at Adelphi University Sunday.