RECAP WRITTEN BY DYLAN PORCARO
BOSTON, Mass.--#3/3 UMass Boston put on a show in the school's first-ever NCAA home contest, as the Beacons rolled past eighth-seeded Penn State Berks 15-1 in their NCAA Regional First Round Game at Monan Park.
#1 UMass Boston 15, #8 Penn State Berks 1
UMass Boston (35-8)
Penn State Berks (25-11)
HOW IT HAPPENED
The regional tournament was supposed to take place in Harwich, Massachusetts, but due to heavy rain on the Cape, the Beacons got the benefit of being able to play at Monan Park due to the turf surface. It paid off in a big way, as the Beacons raced out to a 10-0 lead and never looked back against the pesky Nittany Lions.
Junior pitcher Fernando Burgos (Hyde Park, Mass.) provided one of the biggest highlights of the night. In his fourth collegiate NCAA start, he earned his first career NCAA win and his program record-setting 18thcareer win and record-setting ninth win in a single-season. The junior scattered two hits and two walks over five scoreless frames.
The lethal offense did not waste much time to give Burgos the run support he needed, in fact they really put this game out of reach as fast as they could. Chris Fowler (Barnstable, Mass.) came up to bat with no outs and the bases loaded in the home half of the third inning. He singled to right field, bringing home two runs and setting things up well for Ryan McCormick (Cumberland, R.I.). McCormick singled to left to plate a third run and Nick Herzog (Riverhead, N.Y.) followed with an RBI single of his own to make the score 4-0. McCormick would go on to score on a pass ball and Eddie Riley (Quincy, Mass.) drove the last run of the inning in on a sacrifice fly.
The Beacons had some good fortune in the following inning, as Dave Murphy (Plymouth, Mass.) scored on a balk with the bases loaded. Anthony Cecere (Wakefield, Mass.) added another with a sacrifice fly to right field, bringing home McCormick.
UMass Boston scored another pair in the fifth, thanks in large part to a leadoff triple off the bat of Charlie Huegi (Sandy Hook, Conn.). Riley drove Huegi in as he reached on an error and made it to second base. Murphy got himself an RBI as he hit a sacrifice fly to left field, bringing home Riley.
With the lead at 10-0 heading into the sixth, the Beacons took Burgos out after just 74 pitches. The Beacons used four different relievers over the final four innings, who allowed just one earned run on two hits over four frames of work.
Huegi and Murphy both drove in runs in the sixth, the third straight inning the Beacons got on the board. Sal Frosceno (Derby, Conn.) also crossed the plate on a wild pitch, giving UMass Boston a 13-1 advantage.
Ben Gottesman (Acton, Mass.) came in to close things out in the ninth, where he now had a 15-1 lead after Chris Fowler added two more runs in the previous inning. Gottesman struck out two and got the job done, as the Beacons advanced to the next round in regionals.
BY THE NUMBERS
- Frosceno played in his program record setting 174thgame Thursday night. He finished 1-3 with a run scored and two stolen bases.
- Fowler led the Beacons with four RBI in the game, while McCormick added two hits, two runs, an RBI and two walks.
- Boudrias moved into sole possession of fourth-place in program history in career hits. The junior DH went 3-4 in the game to move past three players into sole possession of fourth place (178 hits).
- Every starter in the Beacons' lineup either had a hit or an RBI.
- The Beacons turned three double plays in the win.
- UMass Boston improved to 9-0 all-time in the New England Regional. The Beacons are 11-2 all-time in NCAA Regional play in four appearances and have always won at least their first two games of a regional.
- With the win, UMass Boston moved to 3-0 all-time against Penn State Berks. All three matchups have come in the NCAA Regionals, with the Beacons earning a 10-5 in 2016 and 9-8 (10 inning) win in 2017.
Top-seeded UMass Boston will take on #5 Ramapo College on Friday afternoon at 5:00 p.m. in game three of the day. All four games are scheduled to be played at Whitehouse Field on the Cape. Friday's game will mark the first-ever NCAA tournament contest between the Beacons and roadrunners and just the second-ever meeting between the two sides. The Beacons will be the visitor in Friday's game.