NEW BEDFORD — Battling ninth doesn’t faze Sarah Carvalho.

“It doesn’t matter where you are in the lineup, everyone is a hitter,” said the GNB Voc-Tech sophomore.

Carvalho proved it Thursday afternoon as she slugged three hits to power the Bears to a 9-2 come-from-behind win over Dighton-Rehoboth in a key South Coast Conference matchup.

“You just have to believe in yourself,” said Carvalho of her mentality at the plate. “I know [D-R pitcher Emily Reid is] fast and it’s a little intimidating, but you just have to watch it and do the work. Whatever you’ve been practicing, you just have to take it to the plate.”

After the Falcons scored two runs in the top of the third inning to take a 2-0 lead, the Bears came battling back.

Senior Sarah Duarte led off the bottom of the third with a single to left field. Senior Averi Soares and junior Skyla Berube each reached on singles to load the bases. A sacrifice fly by junior Payton Conceicao plated pinch runner Paige Cutinho to cut D-R’s lead in half. Then Piper Crooks and Carvalho each drove in two more runs on singles to cap a five-run inning and put Voc-Tech up for good at 5-2.

“They’re phenomenal sophomores,” said GNB Voc-Tech head coach Mark Collins of Crooks and Carvalho. “Having them down there (in the lineup) gives us options to play the game a little different. We could go small ball or we could go hit and run. The top of the lineup we’re mostly ground and pound with not a lot of speed. We’re looking for the big hits, but down there with them, they open up my options more and they did today.”

Carvalho went 3-for-4 with two RBIs and a run scored while Crooks was 1-for-3 with three runs scored, two RBIs and was hit by a pitch.

“We have a very strong offense,” said Soares, a co-captain. “We have a deep lineup. We love seeing everyone else being successful.”

Soares said that the team was confident it could come back after being down early to a quality opponent like D-R.

“We always find a way to come back,” she said. “We seem to go down a lot early into games, but we just come back fighting and swinging like we did today. This was a big game and we were definitely ready.”

Carvalho added, “We didn’t give up. That’s one thing about this team is we never give up and I love it.”

The Bears added two runs in both the fifth and sixth innings to pad their cushion and silenced the Falcons the rest of the way behind the pitching of sophomore Jenna Sylvia and Voc-Tech’s defense.

“Greater New Bedford has a very good team,” said Dighton-Rehoboth head coach Steve Kulpa. “We go up 2-0 and they battle right back and score five real quick. My approach is we’re up 2-0 and we’re winning, I’m expecting us to win that game and that’s it.”

The Bears recorded 13 hits and took advantage of a couple errors by the Falcons to capture the season sweep and hand D-R it’s only two conference losses.

“It’s the first time I’ve known that this program has ever beat that team twice in one year,” Collins said. “All the credit goes to those kids out there. They do a great job.

“This team is amazing on how it handles itself. It’s because of the captains. They’re never out. We were on base all game long today. In year’s past, we probably would have crumbled.”

WHAT IT MEANS: GNB Voc-Tech, which improved to 15-4 and 11-1 in the SCC, has another big conference matchup, hosting Fairhaven at 12:15 p.m. on Rivalry Sunday at UMass Dartmouth. ... The loss dropped D-R to 12-4 and 10-2 in the SCC. The Falcons host Old Rochester on Monday.

KULPA: “We knew Voke could hit. We have to be better defensively and make better plays and be smarter.”

COLLINS: “Sarah (Carvalho) is one heck of a little player. She’s smart. She does all the little dirty work. I’m not afraid to put young kids out there. It just keeps the door revolving. You have to be talented enough and have softball IQ to perform at this level and those kids have that.”

DIGHTON-REHOBOTH STATS: Reid, Andria Braga, Alison Ainley, Caitlyn McCarthy, Calli Pratt, Mia Iodice and Lexi Lowell each had a hit. ... Reid struck out 12, walked two, had one hit batsman and allowed 13 hits in six innings.

GNB VOC-TECH STATS: Duarte went 2-for-4 with an RBI; Soares went 3-for-4 with a run scored; Berube went 3-for-4 with two runs scored. ... Sylvia scattered seven hits with three walks, one hit batsman and four strikeouts over seven innings.

NOTES: Lowell had a diving catch in right field for D-R in the bottom of the fourth. ... Carvalho had a spinning catch at third base in the top of the fifth.

Follow Laurie Los on Twitter @LaurieLosSCT

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WP: Jenna Sylvia (9-4); LP: Emily Reid