BEVERLY, Mass.- The No. 2 seed Eastern Nazarene College softball team won a pair of elimination games Friday afternoon to stay alive in the Commonwealth Coast Conference Tournament. The Lions edged Salve Regina 2-0 before topping Nichols 4-1 to advance to the final day of the Commonwealth Coast Conference Tournament on Saturday at Endicott College.
Rebecca Ashman (Havre de Grace, Md.) and Elisabeth Schaffer (Benton, Pa.) propelled Eastern Nazarene to the two wins. Ashman reached base five times on the day and finished with three hits, three stolen bases, and four runs scored. Schaffer pitched two complete games and posted 25 strikeouts while allowing just five hits.
NO. 2 EASTERN NAZARENE 2, NO. 4 SALVE REGINA 0
The Lions started the day with a 2-0 victory over Salve Regina to notch the program's first-ever tournament win.
Ashman tallied a pair of hits, two runs scored, and two stolen bases in the contest. Lauren Clements (Garrison, Texas) collected two base knocks while Kayleen Garrick (Sparks, Nev.) chipped in with one RBI.
Eastern Nazarene quickly established a 1-0 edge with a run in the bottom of the first inning. Ashman motored home from second base as Garrick reached on an error off of a sacrifice bunt.
The Lions doubled their advantage to 2-0 with a run in the third. Ashman scored her second run of the game as she scurried home on a groundout by Garrick.
Schaffer tossed a one-hit shutout and racked up 15 strikeouts in the pitcher's circle.
NO. 2 EASTERN NAZARENE 4, NO. 7 NICHOLS 1
Eastern Nazarene shifted to Gordon College for its second tilt of the day where it slugged past Nichols 4-1. Kendall Meehan singled to right to knock in Colleen Callahan from third.
Ashman registered a pair of runs scored, one base hit, and a stolen base. Dominique Santos (Lancaster, Calif.) and Clements each belted home runs in the victory.
The Bison opened the scoring early with a run in the top of the first inning to claim a 1-0 lead. Kendall Meehan singled to right to knock in Colleen Callahan from third.
The Lions jumped ahead 2-1 with a pair of runs in the home half of the first. Clements crushed her team-leading ninth home run of the season, a two-run shot to drive in Ashman.
Eastern Nazarene tacked on two runs in the fifth inning to widen the gap to 4-1. Santos launched her fourth homer of the year to plate Ashman.
Schaffer spun her 18th complete game of the spring and fanned 10 batters to record her 17th win in the circle.
Up next, the Lions return to Endicott College Saturday, May 5 to battle the top-seeded Gulls in an elimination contest for a spot in the CCC Tournament Championship series against third-seeded Western New England.