UMass Bats Fall Silent As Minutemen Lose To Northwestern, 4-2
March 20, 2007
Bradenton, Fla. - The Minutemen (2-5) must have used up all the offense in their bats yesterday because today against the Northwestern Wildcats (3-10) the team could muster only two runs in a 4-2 loss. Jim Cassidy (Medway, Mass.) continued his torrid hitting streak, driving in the lone UMass runs today. Sophomore Mike Dicato (0-3) (Winthrop, Mass.) had a rough outing allowing four earned runs in 2 2/3 innings today in his third start of the season.
For the third straight game, UMass fell behind early. However, unlike the last two days, the Minutemen did not have enough gas in the tank to come back and pull out the win. In the bottom of the second, the home team Wildcats opened the scoring with an RBI double by Max Mann, driving in Caleb Fields, who reached on a single to left.
In the next inning, with Northwestern leading 1-0, the Wildcats tacked on three more runs. DiCato managed to get two quick outs, retiring the first two batters of the inning. He then proceeded to load the bases on a walk to the third batter he faced, Antonio Mule, followed by a Jake Goebbert single through the right side of the infield. With runners on first and second, Fields lined a single to left field, driving in Mule from third. The hit parade continued for Northwestern when the next batter, Mann, singled up the middle, picking up his second RBI of the game. DiCato then struggled with his control, walking the next batter to load the bases and the following batter to force in the fourth and final Northwestern run of the afternoon. After his third walk of the inning, Coach Mike Stone summoned Beau Hodges (Manchester, N.H.) from the bullpen for his second appearance of the year. Hodges quelled the Northwestern rally by striking out Kenneth Avila to end the inning.
Hodges then continued to pitch two more innings of stellar scoreless relief, giving a chance for the Minutemen bats to catch up. Unfortunately, UMass were facing a hot pitcher in Joe Muraski and were shut out until the top of the seventh.
With time beginning to run short, the Minutemen offense awoke from its slumber in the seventh. After senior Bryan Adamski (South Deerfield, Mass.) flied out to lead off the inning, junior catcher Bryan Garrity (Peabody, Mass.) forced a walk to give the Minutemen only their fifth runner of the game. Bill Rankin (Willington, Conn.) then flew out for the second Minuteman out of the inning. With two down, Jim Macdonald (Cheshire, Conn.) was issued a free pass, putting runners of first and second. UMass' newest hitting star Cassidy came through with a bases clearing double, driving in both Garrity and MacDonald for UMass' only runs of the contest. Unfortunately, the next batter, Ryan Franczek (Chicopee, Mass.) stranded MacDonald by striking out to end the inning.
The Minutemen would threaten to score with the game on the line in the top of the ninth when MacDonald reached on a throwing error and Cassidy singled to third base. The rally was to no avail as Franczek grounded out to end the game
Cassidy lead the team with two hits in four at bats and two RBI, while Garrity picked up hit in two at bats. Adamski, sophomore Adam Tempesta (Brockton, Mass.), and senior Travis Munsey (Durham, N.H.) collected the other three UMass hits.
After DiCato left the game, the UMass pitching buckled down as Hodges and Aaron Smith (Westfield, Mass.) combined for 5 1/3 innings of scoreless relief.
UMass will wrap up its stay in Bradenton tomorrow against the Illinois Fighting Illini at 10 a.m. Fans can follow the game via Gametracker at UMassAthletics.com.
GET YOUR OFFICIAL
|There are no upcoming events.|