SALEM — Masconomet senior softball captain Amber Goudreau scattered four hits and struck out 16 batters to lead her team to a 7-1 victory over a much improved Salem High squad Wednesday at windy Mack Park.
Goudreau’s stellar performance came one day after striking out 11 in a 10-inning win over Gloucester. She also drove in the winning run to defeat the Fishermen, and did it despite being sick.
“I had been sick but felt fine today,” said Goudreau. “I threw mostly fastballs and changeups. I’m really excited about this season and have total confidence in the team behind me. Everyone is so supportive and strong.”
“That’s 27 strikeouts for Amber in two days,” said Masconomet (3-2) head coach Joe Ciccarello. “She’s a great leader, and I wanted her to work on getting stronger after last season. She did … and it’s paying off.”
Goudreau and Salem freshman Annie Thornett were locked in a pitcher’s duel in the early innings before the visitors got on the board with two runs in the top of the third. Kylie Dumont, the No. 9 hitter, singled up the middle, Charlotte Leiss reached on an error, and captain Natalie Nolan ripped a single over the second baseman’s head to knock her in. Leiss then scored on an infield out.
The Witches (now 2-2) escaped without further damage when freshman shortstop Liv Loux made a spectacular catch to rob Masco’s Mia Theberge of extra bases and end the inning. She raced back to the outfield grass and made a one-handed grab with her back to the plate.
Goudreau was in control all the way, holding Salem to three singles plus a triple by Loux in the fifth. First baseman Skylar Sverker had two of the Witches’ singles and also hit a long fly ball.
Thornett, who pitched all seven innings for Salem while allowing eight hits and three walks while fanning five, also hit safely and drove in Loux with the lone run.
“We didn’t get the hits with runners on for the most part,” said Salem head coach Rick O’Leary. “We had been hitting well until this game, and the Masco pitcher was great all game. I thought we played fairly well, but made a couple of mistakes that hurt us.
“Annie threw the ball really well. We’re a very young team with no seniors, a freshman pitcher, freshman shortstop, and eighth grade catcher (Julia Gauthier). That was a great catch by Liv, and she makes plays like that phenomenal one every game.”
The Chieftains broke the game open with four runs in the fifth. The top of the order did the damage with consecutive singles by Leiss, Nolan, Goudreau, and Sam Serio. The Witches made two costly throwing errors that allowed runners to race to the plate.
A walk and error produced the last Masco run in the sixth.
Nolan had a pair of hits and scored twice to lead the visitor’s attack.
Contact Jean DePlacido @JeanDePlacidoSN