STANDISH, Maine – Saint Joseph's College (29-9, 13-3 GNAC) split a pair of Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) baseball games versus Suffolk University (22-15-1, 14-2 GNAC) on Sunday afternoon at Larry Mahaney Diamond. The Monks took game one 15-8, while the Rams salvaged a split with a 3-1 win in the nightcap.
With the split Suffolk claims the top seed in the GNAC Tournament, which begins with a single-elimination round – featuring the 3-6 seeds – on Tuesday, and the Rams will host a second-round matchup on Thursday. The Monks await the results between Johnson & Wales and Colby-Sawyer tomorrow, as the two teams clash in New London, N.H. in the final GNAC twinbill of the season after several rainouts, to learn whether they will host a single-elimination game on Tuesday or a second-round game on Thursday.
Saint Joseph's 15, Suffolk 8
The Monks jumped ahead in the first inning after senior outfielder Jared Gagne (Dover, N.H.) doubled with one out, advanced to third base, and scored on a groundout by senior catcher Anthony DiPrizio (Rochester, N.H.).
The Monks' bats erupted in the second inning as the hosts sent 16 batters to the plate while scoring nine runs off 10 hits in the frame. The Monks received RBI hits from Gagne, DiPrizio, Noah McDaniel (Eliot, Maine), Ben Gravel (Rochester, N.H.), Ronan Chisholm (North Chatham, Mass.), and Hunter Richardson (Monmouth, Maine) en route to claiming a 10-0 cushion.
Now trailing by double digits in the top of the third, Suffolk got two runs back when Tim Brigham (Cape Elizabeth, Maine) roped a two-run single, sending home Rich Gilbride (Beverley, Mass.) and Trevor Lee (Flanders, N.J.).
The Monks got one of those runs back in the bottom of the third as DiPrizio led off the inning with a moon-shot home run over the left field wall.
The Monks tacked on four more runs in the bottom of the fifth – without registering a hit - to increase the score to 15-2.
The Rams would cut into the 13-run deficit in the top of the sixth as pushed six runs across while sending 12 batters to the plate in the inning. Logan Heckman (Mechanicville, VA) registered a one out pinch-hit single. Ben Isaak (Durham, N.H.) followed with a single. Following a strikeout, the Rams got four consecutive RBI singles from Connor Troio (Shrewsbury, Mass.), Gilbride, Lee, and Blasé Cormier (Wayland, Mass.) to cut the lead to 15-6. Brigham would add another RBI single, and Heckman drew a bases loaded walk to finish out the scoring.
ON THE MOUND
- Sophomore Zach Begin (Georgetown, Mass.) earned the win to improve to 5-0 after throwing 5.2 innings giving up six earned runs and registering four strikeouts.
- Matt Poff (Pelham, N.H.) was effective in relief for the Monks, throwing 1.1 innings giving up no runs and registering one strikeout.
- Suffolk starter Worth Walrod (Dedham, Mass.) took the loss falling to 4-3 after giving up 10 runs (5 earned) in 1.2 innings while registering three strikeouts.
OFF THE BAT
- DiPrizio went 3-4 with four RBIs and three runs scored with a homerun
- Chisholm went 3-4 with a run scored, an RBI and a double
- McDaniel went 2-4 with three RBI and three runs scored
- Richardson went 2-3 with two doubles and two RBI
- Gagne went 2-5 with two doubles, two RBI and two runs scored
- For the Rams, Brigham went 2-4 with three RBI while Lee had two hits
Suffolk 3, Saint Joseph's 1
The Rams broke the scoreless tie in the top of the third after they scored three runs with two outs. Gilbride drew a two-out walk and Lee followed with a bunt single to provided the visitors with runners on first and second. Cormier then hit a single to center that plated Gilbride and advanced Lee to third. A slow chopper groundout off the bat of Will Hopkins (Old Rochester, Mass.) sent Lee home and a pair of wild pitches allowed Cormier to touch the plate and make the score 3-0.
The fourth, fifth, and sixth innings were quiet as the two teams combined for one hit, a Gilbride single in the top of the fifth.
The Rams starter, Kevin Sinatra (East Boston, Mass.) went all seven innings in the winning effort to improve to 5-3 while scattering five hits to go along with five strikeouts.
The Monks received exceptional relief pitching from George Welch (Derry, N.H.), Weston Bergeron (Lyman, Maine), and Jonathan Marchia (Chicopee, Mass.), as the trio combined to throw 3.1 innings of scoreless relief keeping the Monks within striking distance.
The Monks made things interesting in the bottom of the seventh when junior second basemen Drew Healey (Rochester, N.H.) led off with a single to center field. After a ground out to second base, pinch hitter, Kevin Aylward (East Bridgewater, Mass.) would ground a ball deep in the whole to shortstop that he would beat out the throw to first. The throw skipped away from the first baseman, allowing pinch runner Justin Juliano to score and Aylward would advance to second. But Sinatra would settle back down and got the final two outs to finish off the complete game victory.
ON THE MOUND
- Matt Bergeron (Salem, N.H.) would take the loss and fall to 6-2 after allowing three runs on four hits in 3.2 innings
- Welch, Weston Bergeron, and Marchia would combine for 3.1 innings of one hit baseball in relief.
- Sinatra went the distance for the Rams picking up his fifth win of the season.
OFF THE BAT
- Senior Joey Murphy (Derry, N.H), Healey, McDaniel, and Chisholm all had singles and went 1-3
- Cormier and Hopkins went 1-4 and 1-3 respectively, while each added an RBI for the Rams
- Gilbride, Lee and Rich Giandrea (Audubon, N.J.) all added hits
~ JRB ~