Baseball Splits Doubleheader With St. Bonaventure
April 13, 2013
AMHERST, Mass. - After having the potential tying run thrown out at the plate to end game one in a 4-3 loss, the UMass baseball team rebounded to take game two of its doubleheader against St. Bonaventure, 9-3, on Saturday afternoon at Earl Lorden Field. The Minutemen are now 6-18 overall, 2-6 in the Atlantic 10, while the Bonnies sit at 10-16 on the season and 3-5 in conference play.
UMass stranded a pair of runners in scoring position with less than two outs in the bottom of the second of game two, but broke through in its next trip to the plate to take a 3-0 lead. Redshirt junior Ryan Cusick and senior Rich Graef began the third with back-to-back singles and junior Rob McLam followed with a sacrifice bunt that plated Cusick for the first run of the contest. Redshirt sophomore Adam Picard then added another pair for the Minutemen with one swing of the bat, sending a two-run homer over the fence in left center.
The scoring continued for UMass in the bottom of the fourth as the squad expanded its advantage to 5-0. Junior Kellen Pagel and freshman Vinny Scifo both reached with singles and later came in on a sacrifice fly by Graef and a two-out RBI single to right by McLam, respectively.
St. Bonaventure then cut into its deficit in the top of the fifth. Michael Meredith drew a one-out walk, Thad Johnson doubled down the left field line and Bret Heath brought Meredith home with an infield single. Two more hits, a single by Austin Ingraham and a double by Jason Radwan, both which came with two outs, closed the gap to 5-3.
The Minutemen posted runs in each of its next three trips to the plate, though, to seal the win. After Picard was intentionally walked with two down in the sixth, junior Dylan Begin poked a two-run single through the left side to increase UMass' lead to 7-3. Then in the seventh, Cusick reached on a fielder's choice, stole his third base of the day, and scored on a single to left center by Graef.
Picard capped of the victory with his second home run of the contest, a solo shot to left to lead off the bottom of the eighth.
Senior Jordan Pace worked eight innings in his start for the Minutemen and earned the win (2-3) after allowing three runs on eight hits with three walks and three strikeouts. Asa Johnson took the loss (1-1) for the Bonnies as he let up seven runs, five earned, on 11 hits with one walk and four strikeouts.
St. Bonaventure struck first in game one, plating a run in the top of the second. Eric Jutca led off the frame with a single through the right side and scored on a single to left by Meredith. UMass knotted the score at 1-1 in the bottom of the fourth. McLam led off with a double, was sacrificed over to third and came in on a wild pitch.
However, the Bonnies climbed back on top in the fifth, capitalizing on an error that allowed Nick Lohrer to reach to begin the inning. Radwan and Ingraham both came through with two-out RBI singles to give St . Bonaventure a 3-1 lead.
The Minutemen took one of the runs back in the bottom of the frame as Paul Yanakopulos led off with a single through the left side and later came home on a fielder's choice ground ball.
The Bonnies responded, though, by scoring its fourth of the contest in the sixth. Johnson opened up St. Bonaventure's turn at bat with a double to center and Meredith drove him in with a double to right.
UMass closed the gap to 4-3 in the bottom of the eighth as Cusick singled to center, moved up a sacrifice, went to third on a passed ball and came in on McLam's third hit of the contest, a single down the left field line.
The Minutemen threatened in the ninth after the first two batters in the inning, junior Nik Campero and sophomore Jeff Cavanaro reached courtesy of an error and a walk. A sacrifice bunt by Yanakopulos moved the pair into scoring position, but pinch runner Zach Littman was thrown out at the plate attempting to score on a fly ball to left to end the game.
Sophomore Andrew Grant suffered the setback (2-4) on the mound for UMass. He allowed four runs, two earned, on 10 hits with one walk and five strikeouts over 5.1 innings of work. Andrew Revello picked up the win (3-4) for the Bonies after going 8.0 innings in his start and surrendering three runs on six hits with three walks and four strikeouts.
McLam finished the doubleheader a team-best 4-for-8 at the plate for the Minutemen with a double, three RBI, two runs scored and two stolen bases. Cusick was 3-for-9 with four runs scored and Picard drove in three and scored twice.
The teams will close out the weekend series tomorrow on Earl Lorden Field with game three set for a noon start.