WALTHAM, Mass. – Junior lefty Kelsey Smith (Jaffrey, N.H./Conant HS) pitched a five-hit shutout in game two to lead Bentley University to a 3-0 victory and a split of its Northeast-10 Conference Northeast Division softball doubleheader at Bentley Wednesday afternoon.
The first game was also a shutout, but that one belonged to Stonehill's Sarah Ropiak (Acton), a senior righty who turned in a three-hitter in a 1-0 victory.
Smith, who improved to 4-0 on the season, walked one and struck out two while posting her second career shutout. She didn't allow a runner to reach third and Stonehill only had two who reached second base.
Bentley grabbed a 2-0 lead in the second with the inning beginning with singles by junior center fielder Chelsea Vena (Matawan, N.J./St. John Vianney HS) and junior left fielder Kelsey Kennedy (Bedford, N.H./Bedford HS). Following a ground out that moved both into scoring position, Vena scored when she beat the throw home after a grounder to short by senior catcher Jill Raia (Montville, N.J./Morristown-Beard School). Later in the inning, a single by sophomore right fielder Stephanie McQuaid (Windham, N.H./Austin Prep) brought in Kennedy with the Falcons' second run.
Bentley added insurance in the sixth when Kennedy doubled to left center and scored on a single down the left field line by sophomore second baseman Catie Noons (North Dighton/Dighton-Rehoboth Reg. HS).
Bentley's six hits in game two included a pair by Kennedy, who is now hitting .302 for the season.
The only run of the opener came in the fourth when senior second baseman Alison Sumski (Amherst, N.H.) led off with a homer to center.
The homer followed a half-inning in which Bentley was unable to capitalize on a lead-off triple by Noons. Raia was hit by a pitch to put runners on the corners, but a double play and a strikeout got Ropiak out of the inning.
Bentley senior lefty Kelly Ferris (Seymour, Conn./Seymour HS) took the loss despite pitching a five-hitter. It marked the fourth time that the Falcons have been shutout in one of her starts. Two of Bentley's three hits came from sophomore designated player Jordan Ballantyne (Hopewell Junction, N.Y./Arlington HS).
Bentley, 5-2 since returning north, finished the day at 7-10 overall and 3-1 in the Northeast Division. Stonehill remained a game under .500 overall (10-11) and a game over in divisional play (4-3).
Bentley will continue an eight-game home stand with noon doubleheaders Saturday (New Haven) and Sunday (Southern Connecticut).