Middlebury earned a come-from-behind 8-7 win over Keene State in game one, but fell by a 13-9 score in the nightcap on Wednesday afternoon. The Panthers (7-9) return to NESCAC play on Friday afternoon with a 5:00 p.m. game at Wesleyan, while the Owls (6-12) will host Castleton on Thursday at 3:00 p.m.
Trailing 1-0 in the first inning, Middlebury loaded the bases with a single to left center by Sophie Bolinger and walks from Emily Moore and Melanie Mandell. Noelle Ruschil drove in a run with a groundout, while Moore scored on a sacrifice fly from Sophia Marlino to make it 2-0. Sara Tobias singled to left to drive in a run, while a base hit up the middle from Kaylee Gumm made it a 4-1 game.
Keene scored twice in the fourth inning on a bases loaded walk by Paige Gouldthorpe and a fielder's choice to second from Cassie Woods.
Middlebury answered with a run in the bottom of the inning when Ally Doll singled to right center and later scored on a fielder's choice.
The Owls struck with four runs in the top of the fifth to take a 7-5 lead. Lauren Rousseau drove in a pair with a single to right center to highlight the inning.
The Panthers went back on top in the sixth inning as singles by Doll, Bolinger and Moore loaded the bases. Mandell followed, ripping a single to right field to plate a pair and tie the game at 7-7. Ruschil gave the Panthers the lead for good when her sacrifice fly to center drove in Moore.
Doll finished the game 3-3 and scored twice, while Bolinger and Moore were each 2-3 with two runs scored apiece. Irene Margiotta (5-5) earned the win, striking out three over seven innings of work.
Brooke Arruda, Rousseau and Olivia McGrath were each 2-4 to lead Keene, with two runs scored and two RBI from Rousseau. McGrath (1-3) suffered the loss in relief, allowing three runs on four hits.
Middlebury started game two with five runs in the first inning. Ruschil singled to right center to drive in Moore, while Olivia Bravo ripped a two-run single to right to highlight the frame.
Keene responded in the second with six runs to take a 6-5 lead. A three-run triple to center by Woods was the big hit during the inning.
The Owls kept things going in the third with four more runs, all of them unearned. Courtney Votto drove in three of the runs with a bases-clearing double to center.
Middlebury nearly got back into the game in the bottom of the third, but a great running catch in center by Wood on a ball hit by Bolinger with the bases loaded ended the inning.
Keene added a run in the fourth for an 11-5 lead, before the home team struck for a pair in the bottom of the inning. Liza Tarr drove in a run with an infield single, while Ruschil scored on a fielder's choice.
The Owls added a pair of runs in the fifth for a 13-7 lead, but the Panthers struck for two of their own on an RBI double to left center by Moore and a run-scoring single to center by Mandell.
The game was halted at the end of the fifth inning due to darkness.
Five different Panthers had two hits in the game, including Tobias and Bravo, who each went 2-2. Moore was 2-3 with three runs scored, while Bravo had a pair of RBI. Caroline Thacker (0-2) suffered the loss, allowing five earned runs over five innings of work.
Woods went 2-2 with a double, triple, two runs scored and four RBI for the Owls, while Votto was 1-3 with three runs driven in. Alexis Blanchette (2-4) picked up the win, striking out three over four innings of work.