Baseball

 
Baseball Looks To Defend Beanpot Title At Fenway Monday

April 28, 2013

 Massachusetts (10-24) vs. Northeastern (23-17)
Date  Monday, April 29, 2013 at 5:00 p.m.
Location  Fenway Park | Boston, Mass.
Weather Forecast

 Partly Cloudy, 63 Degrees | Chance of Rain: 0%

UMass Probable  LHP Aaron Plunkett (0-3, 4.33 ERA)
Northeastern Probable

 LHP Isaac Lippert (4-1, 2.23 ERA)

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 Game Notes

Beanpot Bits
- UMass is 18-16 all-time in the Beanpot with a 5-3 record in the championship game. In addition to their five titles, the Minutemen also shared the 1998 Beanpot crown after the championship game was rained out. UMass is 2-1 when facing Northeastern in the Beanpot title game as the squads previously met in the championship in 1996 (W, 1-0), 2000 (W, 13-8) and 2009 (L, 5-3).
- The Minutemen are 11-9 in Beanpot games played at Fenway Park.
- UMass is 5-6 all-time against Northeastern in Beanpot games.

Minutemen Advance To Beanpot Championship
- UMass rallied from a 4-0 deficit by scoring a season-high 11 runs to down Boston College, 11-6, in the teams' first round Beanpot game on Apr. 10 to secure a spot in the championship for the fourth time in the past six seasons.
- The Eagles scored four times with two outs in the top of the first. UMass responded, though, by cutting its deficit to one in its first trip to the plate. With redshirt sophomore Adam Picard, sophomore Bryan Dionicio and junior Kellen Pagel on via a hit by pitch, a single and a walk, respectively, freshman John Jennings drew a bases loaded walk to force in the first run of the day for the Minutemen. Freshman Vinny Scifo followed with an RBI single to right to drive in Dionicio and another bases loaded walk to senior Rich Graef with two away brought the score to 4-3.
- The Minutemen overtook the Eagles in the bottom of the fourth courtesy of a two-out, bases-clearing triple by Picard to the base of the fence in left center that gave UMass a 6-4 advantage.
- UMass then broke the game open with a five-run fifth, tallying five hits and sending 11 batters to the plate. Pagel started a string of three straight hits for the Minutemen with a one-out double to left center, his first career extra base hit, and crossed the plate on an errant throw to first as Jennings legged out an infield single.
-Freshman Evan Mackintosh collected his first career win (1-0) for the Minutemen after throwing three scoreless innings of relief and allowing just one hit while walking one and striking out two.
- Freshmen Jennings (3-for-4) and Scifo (2-for-3) combined for half of UMass' hits in the contest and each drove in a run. Dionicio went 2-for-4 with a run scored and two RBI in his first career start, Picard drove in three and Graef finished with two RBI and scored twice.

Looking Back – 2012 Beanpot Champions
- On the back of an 8-0 start and 11 strikeouts by Conor LeBlanc, the UMass baseball team claimed its sixth Beanpot Championship with an 8-7 win over Harvard at LeLacheur Park on Apr. 18, 2012.
- The Minutemen took home the title for the first time since 2008.
- LeBlanc was stellar in his start, working into the seventh, throwing six shutout innings, and fanning 11, while walking just one and scattering nine hits with three runs allowed. The 11 Ks matched the highest total by a UMass pitcher ever in a Beanpot game as Scott Barnsby fanned 11 against Northeastern in 1996.
- Picard paced the Minutemen offensively with a 3-for-5 day at the plate, including his second home run of the season and a double. He drove in four and scored three, factoring in all but two of the squads eight runs on the day.
- Harvard threatened to make a comeback in the seventh, scoring six runs on five hits, including three doubles, to cut the deficit to 8-6. UMass worked out of the inning by throwing Jack Colton out at third as he tried to stretch his RBI double into a triple and inducing a groundout off the bat of Ethan Ferreira to end the frame.
- The Crimson pulled to within a run after three singles in the bottom of the eighth. Jeff Reynolds sent a two-out single into right center to plate Kyle Larrow, but with Tanner Anderson, the potential tying run, attempting to move to third on the play, the Minutemen were able to record the out and escape further damage.
- Leif Sorenson worked the final 2.1 innings and allowed one run on four hits with one strikeout en route to the save.
- Tom Conley and Nik Campero both finished the contest 2-for-2 with an RBI as the duo combined with Picard put up seven of the Minutemen's 11 hits.

Last Time Against Northeastern
- Sophomore Conor LeBlanc had his longest outing of the year on the mound for the Minutemen and struck out a season-high five batters, but a two-run fourth for Northeastern made the difference in a 3-1 setback for UMass baseball on Apr. 3 at Friedman Diamond.
- A leadoff walk and an error helped Northeastern generate a pair of runs and take a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the fourth. Jason Vosler drew a free pass to open the frame, moved to second on a wild pitch and scored when Connor Lyons reached on an error. Lyons then came in for the Huskies' second of the inning when John Puttress dropped a one-out single into center.
- UMass cut its deficit in half in the top of the sixth. Senior Rich Graef reached on a two-base error after laying down a bunt and junior Nik Campero drove him in with an RBI single to center.
- However, the Huskies took the run back in the bottom of the eighth, adding insurance. Pete Castoldi led off with a single up the middle, was sacrificed over to second and Bradd Burcroff drove him in with an RBI single.
- LeBlanc took the loss (0-3) for the Minutemen as he allowed three runs, two earned, on five hits and walked two with five strikeouts in 7.1 innings on the mound. James Mulry pitched seven innings for Northeastern and picked up the win (1-0). He let up one unearned run on three hits, walked two and struck out four. Dylan Maki worked a hitless ninth for the Huskies and walked one, earning the save (4).
- Redshirt junior Ryan Cusick was the only player for either squad to tally multiple hits on the afternoon, going 2-for-3 at the plate to extend his reached base streak to 12 games, a team-best for UMass this season.

Young Arms
- The UMass pitching staff is young one in 2013 after the departure of four senior arms in 2012, including Atlantic 10 Pitcher of the Year Joe Popielarczyk, along with Dennis Torres, who turned pro following his junior season.
- The only returning Minutemen who made multiple starts in 2012 are sophomores Conor LeBlanc and Andrew Grant. LeBlanc was 4-1 with a 3.37 ERA over 34.2 innings in 12 appearances, five starts last season and earned Atlantic 10 All-Rookie Team honors. Grant finished with a mark of 1-1 over eight appearances and three starts, a total of 22.1 innings and posted a 5.24 ERA. Over Grant's last five appearances of his freshman season, his final 16.0 innings of work in 2012, he posted a 1.12 ERA with an opponent batting average of .185.
- The 2013 UMass staff includes freshmen righthanders Rob O'Neil, Mason Trubey and Brandon Walsh and lefthander Evan Mackintosh. Sophomore Pat Lia did not see action last season and Dan Stoops made one appearance before being sidelined for the remainder of the year with an injury.

Up Next
- UMass will play its final non-conference game of the season at Quinnipiac on Wednesday, May 1, at 3 p.m.


 

 

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