Softball wins 12-0 at UMaine-Farmington in regular-season finale

Eliza McNulty hit a two-run home run in the first inning of Bates' 12-0 win at UMaine-Farmington on May 1, 2019. (File photo by Theophil Syslo/Bates College)

FARMINGTON, Maine -- The Bates softball team defeated UMaine-Farmington 12-0 in five innings Wednesday in the Bobcats' final game of the regular season, with first-year Eliza McNulty hitting her first collegiate home run and three pitchers combining on a five-hitter.

Bates (15-20) will next play in the NESCAC Championship tournament Friday at Tufts, facing Williams in Game 1 at 4pm.

McNulty (Cambridge, Mass.) led Bates' offensive barrage with her 3-for-3 day, including two runs scored and two RBIs. The Bates lineup produced 14 hits and 12 runs.

Junior Kirsten Pelletier (Sidney, Maine) started the game and pitched three shutout innings, rising to 12-11. Pelletier lowered her earned-run average to 2.07 and her strikeout raised her team-record total to 138 over a team-record 148.2 innings.

Sophomore Payton Buxton (Middlebury, Vt.) pitched a scoreless fourth inning, allowing just the Beavers' lone hit, and sophomore Jevan Sandhu (Plymouth, N.H.) threw a perfect fifth inning to end the game.

Bates got started with five runs in the first inning off of UMaine-Farmington (14-18) starting pitcher Kailyn Hill (4-12). After singles by sophomore Caroline Bass (Newton, Mass.) and first-year Aleah Pagan (Orinda, Calif.), and sophomore Mary Collette (Watertown, Conn.) getting hit by a pitch loaded the bases for Bates, senior Andrea Russo (Cheshire, Conn.) hit a grounder to shortstop and Pagan was forced out at home for the second out of the inning.

Junior Julia Panepinto (Buffalo, N.Y.) stepped up with a double to right center field, bringing home first-year Janell Sato (Honolulu, Hawaii), who had reached on a fielder's choice, Collette and Russo for a 3-0 lead. Panepinto raised her team-high RBI total to 28 on the play.

McNulty then stepped up and homered to right center, bringing two more runs and giving Bates a 5-0 lead.

Bates added a run in the second as first-year Kennedy Ishii (Honolulu, Hawaii) led off with a single and reached third base on a ground out and a bunt single by Pagan. Sato then flied to center field to drive in Ishii, and the inning then ended with Pagan caught in a rundown.

The Bobcats then put the eight-run rule into play by scoring three runs in the fourth off of UMF pitcher Brianna McGrath, before adding three more in the fifth.

McNulty, first-year Emily Samar (New York, N.Y.) and Bass all singled to load the bases, and Samar then scored on a wild pitch. Sato singled to left center to drive in both Pagan and Bass for a 9-0 Bates lead after four.

Bates loaded the bases again in the fifth inning with no outs for Samar, who singled to left to drive in Russo. Ishii followed with a two-run double to left for a 12-0 Bates lead.