Four In A Row: UMass Wins A-10 Opener At GW, 8-4
March 25, 2011
ALEXANDRIA, Va. - The UMass baseball team picked up its fourth straight win on Friday afternoon, defeating George Washington, 8-4 in the teams' Atlantic 10 opener. For the first time since 2007, the Minutemen (5-8) start conference play at 1-0, while the Colonials drop to 6-16 on the season. Due to an unfavorable forecast for Sunday, the squads will close out the series with a doubleheader, beginning at noon tomorrow.
UMass began the contest with a 2-0 lead after scoring twice in the top of the second. Senior Peter Copa led off the frame with a single through the left side and moved up to third on a double to center by the next batter, senior Kyle Multner. Junior Tom Conley put the Minutemen on the board with a sacrifice fly to right that brought home Copa. Freshman Dylan Begin then drove in Multner with an RBI single through the left side.
In its next turn at bat, UMass added five more runs to increase its advantage to 7-0. Senior Eric Fredette reached with a one out single through left side before walks to Copa an Multner loaded the bases for Conley, who dropped a two-out two-run single into shallow right. Begin picked up his second RBI of the afternoon, plating Multner with a single to left, and freshman Josh Messier capped off the scoring in the frame with a two-run double to the fence in left.
George Washington took one of the runs back in the bottom of the fourth. Brett Bowers hustled out a bunt single and scored from first when Jimmy Best lofted a double to left center. However, Multner pushed the Minutemen's advantage to seven, once again, blasting a solo home run to left in the top of the fourth.
The Colonials threatened again the bottom of the fifth, but managed to plate just two runs after loading the bases with no outs. Jordan Berry had a leadoff single to short and Brendon Kelliher ripped a double to the left field corner. Following a four-pitch walk to Justin Albright, Stephen Oswald poked an RBI single through the left side to send Berry home. Best gave GW its third run of the afternoon with an RBI groundout that scored Kelliher and closed the gap to 8-3.
Continuing to chip away at its deficit, George Washington pulled to within four, scoring for a third consecutive inning with a run in the sixth. Paul Pakan drew a walk on a full count and Berry sent him around with a double to left.
That would be as close as the Colonials would come, however, as junior Leif Sorenson ended the game with 2.2 scoreless innings of relief, allowing just one hit with no walks and two strikeouts to log his second save of the year. Junior Glen Misho moved to 3-1 with his third straight victory. He allowed four runs on 10 hits with four walks and five strikeouts. Brian Derner took the loss (1-3) for George Washington as he surrendered eight runs on eight hits, walked three and struck out four.
Begin and Multner combined for four of the Minitemen's eight hits, going 2-for-3, and 2-for-4, respectively. Begin collected two RBI and scored once, while Multner had one driven in on his second home run of the season and scored three times. Conley registered three RBI and Messier drove in two.
For the Colonials, Keliher batted 3-for-5 and scored once and Oswald was 2-for-5 with an RBI.
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