Jackie Tyler '10
First-year Jackie Tyler is leading Amherst wiith a .667 batting average and 1.033 slugging percentage

Amherst Takes Two from Hamilton to Move to 6-6

By Justin Long

March 31, 2007

AMHERST, MA – The Amherst College softball team defeated visiting Hamilton College twice today to move to 6-6 on the season and 3-0 in NESCAC West play. The Lord Jeffs battled their way back to a 7-6 win in the first game and took the second game in more convincing fashion, 6-3.

The opening game was a back-and-forth battle, with Amherst striking first with a three-run second inning that featured a two-run home run by senior co-captain Caroline Polales (Winnetka, IL), her fourth bomb of the season.  The Continentals stormed right back with three runs of their own in the third, putting together a two-out rally to notch the score at 3-3.

Hamilton pitcher Meg Coughlin helped her cause in the top of the fifth when she tripled to drive in a run, and wound up scoring on a throwing error to give the Continentals a 5-3 lead. In the bottom of the sixth, junior Elizabeth Neckes (Dover, MA) led off with a triple and was driven home by a Holly Trace (Northport, AL) double. After junior Ralina Shaw (Tumwater, WA) moved Trace over to third base with a groundout, Polales picked up her third RBI of the game when her fly-out to center field allowed Trace to tag up and tie the game at 5-5.

Sophomore Amber O’Connor put the Continentals ahead with a solo shot in the seventh, but Amherst still had some offense left in the tank. Red-hot first-year Jackie Tyler (Ridgewood, NJ) led off the bottom of the seventh with a double and advanced to third when sophomore Lindsey Harrington reached base on an error. After Harrington stole second, first-year Emily Neill (Kentfield, CA) flew out to center field for a sacrifice fly to tie the game at 6-6. Neckes roped a single up the middle and Harrington came around from second to score the winning run.

First-year Alex Chang-Graham allowed only three hits in three innings of work, but it was sophomore Maddie Tamagni (Salinas, CA) who picked up the win. Tamagni threw four inning of relief, striking out three batters while allowing only one earned run.

The Continentals got off to a quick start in game two, putting a quick three runs on the board in the first inning, all of which were unearned. The Jeffs were able to tack on one run in their half of the first, but erupted for three runs in the second, two of which came with two outs when Tyler laced a two-RBI triple down the left field line.

Shaw gave Amherst some insurance runs in the sixth when she belted a two-run homer over the left field fence, but junior Samantha Miller (Newton, MA) would not need any more run support, as she held Hamilton scoreless for the final six innings of the game. Miller allowed only six hits and surrendered no earned runs in her seven innings of work, picking up her second win of the season.

Through the first 12 games of the season, Tyler is batting .667 with a 1.033 slugging percentage, while both Neckes and Trace are batting above .400 (.425 and .409, respectively). The Lord Jeffs return to action Tuesday for a doubleheader with Clark University at home. Game one is set to start at 4 p.m.