MANCHESTER, N.H. – Despite a three-run homer from freshman third baseman Noa Rivera (Clifton, N.J./Hawthorne Christian Academy), the Bentley University Falcons surrendered a 6-2 lead and dropped a 7-6 decision to Saint Anselm College in Northeast-10 Conference Northeast Division softball Friday afternoon at the South Athletic Field.
After falling behind 2-0, Bentley turned the game around with six runs in the top of the fourth. Following an infield single by sophomore left fielder Stacey Korotsky (Raynham, Mass./Bridgewater Raynham Reg. HS) and a walk to senior shortstop Catie Noons (North Dighton/Dighton-Rehoboth Reg. HS), Rivera drove the ball over the left field fence for her third home run of her rookie season and a 3-2 Falcon lead.
Rivera is the first Bentley player to have three or more home runs in a season since Jackie Gauthier in 2012.
A throwing error allowed Bentley's fourth run of the inning to score and a two-run single by Korotsky made it 6-2.
The lead didn't survive long as Saint Anselm scored four times in the bottom half of the inning to draw even. The comeback featured a three-run bases-clearing double by freshman pinch-hitter Lauren Washburn (Carmichael, Calif.).
It remained 6-6 until the bottom of the seventh when the Hawks scored the game-winner. Left fielder Maggie Murphy (Scarborough, Maine) doubled to left, putting runners on second and third with one out. Sophomore designated hitter Erin Thompson (Newton, N.H.) singled up the middle, bringing in senior Amanda Bickford (Salem, N.H.) with the game-winning run.
Thompson led Saint Anselm's 12-hit attack with three and the Hawks also received three RBI from sophomore right fielder Shannon Colson (Rochester, N.H.).
Bentley finished with six hits, including two from Korotsky who boosted her average to .309.
Saint Anselm sits atop the Northeast standings with records of 29-9-1 overall, 16-3-1 conference and 12-2 division. Bentley dropped to 11-25 overall, including 8-15 conference and 6-9 division.
The two teams will be back at it Saturday with a noon doubleheader at Saint Anselm.