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Brandeis University's Community Newspaper — Waltham, Mass.

Specker’s career day carries Brandeis past Lasell

Published: April 5, 2012
Section: Sports

The Judges swept Lasell College at home in a day-night doubleheader on Tuesday, winning the first game (20-1) in five innings as well as the second game by a score of 8-3. The 20-1 victory was the largest margin in Jessica Johnson’s six years as head coach of the Judges.

First baseman Marianne Specker ’12 had a career day, driving in seven runs in the first game. She went 2-for-4, hitting a grand slam, which is her first home run of the season and fifth of her career. She also hit a triple with the bases loaded and reached on an error that brought in two runs. A Brandeis player had not driven in seven runs in a game in almost 10 years.

In addition to Specker’s brilliant performance, second baseman Leah McWilliams ’14 contributed in both games by reaching base seven times in seven appearances at the plate. She went 3-for-3 in each game, going 6-for-6 on the day, plus a walk that came in the first game. McWilliams also crossed the plate three times in each game while driving in three runs in the first game and two runs in the second game. Caroline Miller ’12 also hit her third homerun of the season in the first game.

The Brandeis pitchers also performed well on the day. In the opener, Miller went three innings, allowing two hits while striking out six to earn the win and improve to 5-4 on the season. Melissa Nolan ’14 was even more impressive in the nightcap, allowing just four hits during seven innings while striking out eight. She is now 3-1 on the season.

After the games, Ali Theodore ’12 commented on the Judges’ successful day. “I think we did a great job of playing ‘Brandeis softball’ today and not playing down to [Lasell’s] level. After we adjusted to the pitching, we really connected well with the bats, which carried us through the games.”

While pleased with her team’s performance, Theodore added that the team still needs to stay in the right mindset to accomplish the team’s ultimate goal.

“We still need to remember to play every inning with the same strong intensity,” Theodore said. “It’s important to remember that our long term goal is to make the NCAA tournament and, in order to do that, all of the small components of our game need to be perfect. No matter what team we play, it’s a stepping-stone game—miss one step and you fall behind.”

The Judges, who are 7-2 at home this year, have now won five straight wins to improve to 10-8 overall.