Minutemen Drop Extra Inning Heartbreaker At Dayton, 2-1
May 12, 2012
DAYTON, Ohio - The UMass baseball team took a 1-0 lead to the into the bottom of the ninth, but Dayton managed to force extra innings and walked off with the 2-1 victory in the 10th on Saturday afternoon at Woerner Field. Following the setback, the Minutemen fall to 19-20 overall and 11-10 in the Atlantic 10, while the Flyers improve to 25-27 and 14-7 in conference play.
UMass pushed across a run in the top of the third to take a 1-0 lead. Sophomore Nick Sanford drew a leadoff walk, moved to second on a sacrifice and went to third on an infield single by redshirt sophomore Ryan Cusick before coming home on a ground ball by Rob McLam.
Minutemen starter Joe Popielarczyk, who faced the minimum through 4.2 innings, worked out of jams with runners in scoring position with less than two outs in both the seventh and eighth. However in the ninth, a pop up into shallow left by Dayton's Joe Gayda that dropped in safely for a double ultimately led to the tying run for the Flyers. Pinch runner Spencer Rohr tagged up on two fly balls to send the game to the 10th. C.J. Gillman collected the RBI with a sacrifice fly.
The following inning, Zach Stewart led off Dayton's trip to the plate with a single through the right side, moved to second on a sacrifice bunt and to third on an infield hit by Robby Sunderman. After Bobby Glover was walked intentionally to load the bases with two outs, pinch hitter Ian Hundley lined a single into right center to bring in the winning run.
Popielarczyk suffered his first loss (5-1) of the season for UMass and worked 9.1 innings, while letting up two runs on six hits with one walk and three strikeouts. Burny Mitchem (4-7) tossed 3.1 shutout innings for the Flyers, allowed two hits and struck out four.
The Minutemen will be back in action on Tuesday, May 15, playing Siena at 3 p.m., the first of four at home to close out the regular season.