Titans show no mercy in 15-5 win over Panthers

Staff photo by TOM KING A happy group ofNashua North softball players greet Jacqueline Dumont after her grand slam broke open a close game en route to a 15-5 mercy rule win over Nashua South, much to the chagrin of Panthers coach Kevin Handy, right.

NASHUA – What a difference a couple of days makes for the Nashua High School North softball team.

On Monday, the Titans looked way off their game in a season-opening loss at the hands of Merrimack. But maybe the rivalry with Nashua South on Wednesday woke them up, as they trounced the Panthers, 15-5 at South in a game shortened by mercy rule . Both teams mutually agreed to call it quits after four. The two will meet again on May 8.

“I think Monday we got a little bit rattled halfway through,” North coach Jenna Giannelli said. “Today we played all four innings calm and relaxed. We had a big discussion about it. I’m lucky enough to have a resilient group of girls who can lose those bad habits right out of the gate.”

One of those is North’s Jacqueline Dumont, whose grand slam highlighted a seven-run third inning that snapped a 5-5 game. In additon to the grand slam, the University of Southern Connecticut bound senior catcher had two doubles and five RBIs.

“Dumont, I don’t know if there’s a better hitter right now, playing like that around the state,” said Nashua South coach Kevin Handy, who is big in ASA circles. “I’ve been around ball a little bit and that’s a great hitter.”

The Titans had 14 hits in the shortened game, also taking advantage of six walks issued by South starter Delia Callery and reliever Erica Frothingham. But right after Dumont had her big shot, Alexis Miranda followed with a solo shot in just about the exact spot over the right center field wall that extended North’s lead to 12-5.

“They’re a great hitting team, I think North is one of the best hitting teams in the state,” Handy said, his team now 1-1. “I’ve got to give all the credit to North, the better team won the game today.”

Handy’s Panthers, though, didn’t fold early when North had grabbed a 3-0 lead in the top of the first. They grabbed a 4-3 lead in the bottom of the frame on RBI singles by Callery, Catherine Covert and bases loaded walk to Chloe Kelble-Goforth.

And after North had grabbed a 5-3 lead in the top of the second on an errant throw (out of play rule) and a Miranda RBI hit, the Panthers drew even on Callery’s second RBI hit of the game in the second.

But things collapsed for South with five walks, a hit batsman, and four hits (including the two homers) in the seven run third. The Titans than tacked on three more in the fourth on Thavary Hay’s (4-for-4) second RBI hit, Dumont’s second double and Elizabeth Deck’s RBI hit. Titans pitcher Emily Blondin settled down retiring six of the last seven she faced to seal the deal.

“It was motivation for sure,” Giannelli said of beating a rival. “It definitely gets the ball rolling after the day we had on Monday.”