Ralina Shaw '08
Junior Ralina Shaw belted a solo homer in her final home game at Amherst

Jeffs Fall to Williams in Final Home Game of 2007

By Justin Long

April 27, 2007

AMHERST, MA – The Amherst College softball team needed a win over visiting Williams College to keep its postseason hopes alive, but the Ephs proved to be too much, picking up a 6-2 victory to eliminate the Lord Jeffs from playoff contention. Williams improves to 16-13 (8-2 NESCAC) with the win, while Amherst drops to 14-16 (4-6 NESCAC).

The Ephs were on the board early when sophomore Libby Copeland-Halperin ripped an RBI-double for the first run of the game. After Copeland-Halperin was moved over to third base on a wild pitch, she was brought in by a Morgan Simpson bunt single to give Williams an early 2-0 lead.

Junior Ralina Shaw (Tumwater, WA) gave Amherst its first hit and first run of the game in the bottom of the second when she belted a towering solo homer over the fence in left field, getting off to a good start in her final home game at Amherst College. The Ephs responded in the top of the third, however, with a pair of unearned runs, with Copeland-Halperin and Simpson each picking up RBI-singles to give the Ephs a 4-1 lead.

Sophomore Joey Lye led off the top of the fifth with a single and tried to score from second base later in the inning when Simpson sent a grounder deep to the middle infield, but senior co-captain Annalise Rodli (La Canada, CA) gunned her out at the plate to keep the score at 4-1.

The Jeffs threatened in the bottom of the fifth when sophomore Lindsey Harrington (Westford, MA) ripped a two-out triple to the fence in center field, but Amherst was unable to bring her in. After sophomore Becky Sansone found herself in an 0-2 hole with two outs in the top of the sixth, she fouled off four pitches to stay alive, eventually winning the battle by lacing a 2-RBI single to give Williams a 6-1 advantage.

The Jeffs’ best chance for a comeback came in the sixth inning when they loaded the bases with singles from junior Elizabeth Neckes (Dover, MA) and Shaw and a walk by sophomore Holly Trace (Northport, AL), but sophomore Emily Fowler-Cornfeld got out of her jam by getting sophomore Julia Cummings (Los Angeles, CA) to pop up to the shortstop and end the inning.

Harrington walked with one out to get things going for Amherst in the seventh, and was moved over when first-year Jackie Tyler reached on a bunt single for her first hit of the day. Rodli followed by beating out an infield single that drove in Harrington to make it a 6-2 ballgame, chasing Fowler-Cornfeld from the game and bringing in Simpson to pitch. Simpson quickly ended Amherst’s rally, picking up back-to-back strikeouts to seal the deal.

Lye, Copeland-Halperin and Simpson each had two hits for Williams, with Copeland-Halperin, Simpson and Samsone each driving in a pair of runs. Shaw was the lone Jeff with multiple hits on the day (2-for-3).

Fowler-Cornfeld (6-3) allowed just six hits and one earned run in 6.1 innings of work, striking out six while walking three. Junior Sam Miller (Newton, MA) picked up the loss to move to an even 5-5 on the season, as she picked up three strikeouts and did not walk anyone. Sophomore Maddie Tamagni (Salinas, CA) allowed four hits in 4.1 innings of relief, striking out five and walking two.

Shaw, Rodli and senior co-captain Caroline Polales (Winnetka, IL) were recognized before the game for their contributions to Amherst softball over the past four seasons.    

The Ephs and Jeffs meet up again Saturday for a doubleheader in Williamstown, MA. Game one is set to start at 1:30 p.m.