SMITHFIELD, R.I. – After maintaining the lead for four innings, the Bryant University softball team fell to Massachusetts, 6-4, in extra innings.
The Minutewomen (25-20, 12-4 A10) took an early 1-0 lead over the Bulldogs (12-36, 7-9 NEC) in the top of the first after Erin Staceviez scored following Jena Cozza's strike out swinging.
The Bulldogs went down in order in the bottom of the frame, but later took a 3-1 advantage in the bottom of the third.
With one out, freshman Helaina Michaud (Phoenixville, Pa.) singled off a bunt, before advancing to second on a wild pitch. Reigning NEC Rookie of the Week, Gabrielle Ermish (Pottstown, Pa.) hit an RBI single through the right side to kick off the Bulldogs' scoring.
Senior Taylor Burger (Killingworth, Conn.) drove Keast and Goulart in off a double to left center, giving Bryant a 3-1 advantage after three innings of play.
In the bottom of the fourth, the Bulldogs extended the lead to three, 4-1. With a runner on second, pinch hitter Jessica Gradillas (Nogales, Ariz.) hit a two-out RBI single through the left side, plating freshman Tiffany Bell (Egg Harbor City, N.J.).
It wasn't until the sixth inning that the Minutewomen made a dent in the Bulldogs' lead, cutting the margin back to two, 4-2. With two outs and a runner on second, Staceviez reached on an error by Goulart, while Ashton Wince advanced to third before scoring on the error.
The Minutewomen would maintain momentum, tying the game in the top of the seventh, 4-4. Jena Cozza led off with a double to left center. Kaycee Carbone followed with a two RBI home run to right center.
Following the extra inning tiebreaker rule, Nicole Imhof was placed on second. With one out, the Minutewomen loaded the bases after sophomore Colby Norris (Toano, Va.) walked Kaitlyn Stavinoha and hit Cozza with a pitch.
Carbone took advantage of the one-out, bases loaded scenario, hitting a two RBI single to left center to give the visitors a 6-4 edge in extra innings.
Goulart was placed on second to start the bottom of the eighth, but the tiebreaker advantage did not help the Bulldogs as they went down in order, ending their season in a 6-4 nonconference loss to the Minutewomen.
Ermish led the Bulldogs with a 2-for-4 mark, while finishing with one RBI. Carbone went 3-for-4, scoring one run and totaling four RBI.
Meg Colleran recorded the win on the mound, allowing just one hit, while fanning six batters in the final four innings. Norris was dealt the loss, allowing two runs off one hit.