TOWNSEND — The Groton-Dunstable softball team is sending signs that they will need to be reckoned with come playoff time, and the Lady Crusaders continued their outstanding early season play with a dominating 15-0 win over North Middlesex in a game called after five innings because of the mercy rule.

The Lady Crusaders fired on all cylinders. They ripped 15 hits in the game including five for extra bases. They received an outstanding effort on the mound from Kerry Alcott (five innings, no runs, three hits, four strikeouts no walks) and complemented that with flawless defense, including an unassisted double play by second baseman Breezy Riposa.

“We came into the game playing very well and we continued to play well today,” said Groton-Dunstable coach Derek Asadoorian. “We hit the ball well, Kerry pitched a strong game and we made all the plays.”

The Lady Crusaders came out swinging and took the lead for good in the top of the first. Meg McLean led off with a bunt that was misplayed by North Middlesex. She stole second and scored on Steph Dodson’s single. Jess O’Sullivan ripped an RBI double to left center and scored on Alcott’s long triple. When Riposa plated Alcott with a groundout, it was quickly 4-0.

Alcott set the side down in order in the bottom of the inning, and the Lady Crusaders padded the lead with three more runs in the top of the second. North Middlesex helped out by committing a pair of errors. McLean, Dodson and Riposa picked up singles in the frame. North Middlesex rightfielder Katie Fredrickson prevented further damage with gunning down Riposa at second, trying to extend her single to a double.

Hayley Lynch led off the bottom of the second with a single, but Groton-Dunstable catcher Kate Stowell’s strong throw erased her trying to steal second.

Groton-Dunstable added a single run in the third when Jackie Ordemann doubled and scored on Kiersten Bieren’s sacrifice fly.

In the bottom of the third, Courtney Bonner singled to start the inning for North Middlesex, but Riposa fielded a ground ball, tagged Bonner and fired to first for a double play.

The Lady Crusaders tacked on two more runs in the fourth when Dodson singled, stole second and scored on O’Sullivan’s single. O’Sullivan was out at second on a well-played relay by the Lady Patriots, which went from center fielder Marissa Thomas to first baseman Bonner to shortstop Lynch. Alcott tripled and scored on Riposa’s single to make it 10-0.

North Middlesex picked up their final hit of the game when Carla Clement singled with two outs and advanced to second on a wild pitch, but Alcott induced an inning- ending groundout.

Groton-Dunstable wrapped up the scoring with five runs in the fifth, keyed by run-producing hits by McLean (single), Alcott (double) and Stowell (single). Mary Killian and Mary Nojeim both came off the bench to reach base and both came around to score.

Alcott complemented her great effort on the mound with a productive offensive game with two doubles, a triple, three runs scored and three runs-batted-in. Dodson finished with three singles, four runs scored and an RBI while O’Sullivan added a single, double and two RBI and Ordemann a single, double and a run scored. McLean (three runs scored, RBI) and Riposa (two runs-batted-in) each chipped in with two singles.