KEENE, N.H. – After pulling out a 10-8 12 inning victory in the opener, baseball combined for 16 hits and eight runs to take the nightcap by the final of 8-2 to sweep the Owls of Keene State College Saturday afternoon at the Owl Athletic Complex in a Little East Conference doubleheader.
With the two wins, the Beacons push their overall and conference records above .500 for the first time this season. They now sit at 12-11 on the year, and are 5-4 in the conference. They also sit in a tie for fourth place with Western Connecticut State University. For the Owls they dropped to 8-16 overall following the two losses, and have a conference record of 2-7.
On the day the Beacons bats combined for 28 hits to earn their first conference sweep of the 2015 campaign. On the hill senior Josh Cummiskey (Lowell, Mass.) earned the game one victory after going the final 2.2 in the 12 inning marathon. The nightcap win belonged to sophomore Daniel Mantoni (Northbridge, Mass.) who went seven complete, while Harlan Zeerip (Bridgewater, Conn.) recorded his first save of the year after going in the final two frames. The pitchers allowed a combined six hits, with only one of the Owls' runs marked as earned in the game two victory. They also had six K's respectively.
GAME ONE – UMass Boston 10, Keene State College 8 (12 inns.)
After jumping out to an 8-0 lead through the first 7.5 innings, Keene State went on to score three runs in the bottom half of the eighth, and five in the bottom of the ninth to force extra innings. Neither team would plate a run, until the Trevor Bouvier (Salem, N.H.) crushed a two-run shot to give the Beacons the lead. In the bottom half of the frame, Cummiskey allowed just one hit, and got the final three outs in order to seal, what could have been a disastrous loss for UMass.
In total the Beacons combined for 12 hits in the win, with Todd Ezold going 3-for-6 with two RBI and three runs scored. Delvis Baez (Lawrence, Mass.) also had a strong game one finishing 2-for-3 with two runs scored, and a double. For Bouvier the game-winning home run marked the fourth of the year for the junior transfer.
Getting the start was senior lefty Kyle Szatrowski (Agawam, Mass.) who went a strong 7.2. The All-Conference starter allowed just three runs, all unearned, on five hits, and struck out seven. Unfortunately, the bullpen could not keep the Owls at bay as, they came back in the final two innings.
GAME TWO – UMass Boston 8, Keene State College 2
After falling into an early 1-0 hole, the Beacons battled back in the top half of the third as they scored three runs to take a 3-1 lead through three. They would then tack on another run in the top of the sixth before combing for four runs over the final two innings. The Owls would score their last run of the day in the bottom half of the seventh, but unlike game one, a late rally was not in their cards.
Mantoni improved to 2-1 following the game two victory, as he allowed just two walks, while also picking up four K's. Of the two runs allowed only one was earned, with five of the Owls six hits charged to the Northbridge native. He allowed the only Keene State extra base hit, a double. For Zeerip, he completely neutralized the Owls offense allowing just one single, while also striking out two to earn the save.
Not only did he get it done on the hill, but Mantoni also finished 3-for-5 at the plate, with one RBI and two runs scored. Anthony Searles (Shelton, Conn.) pinched hit for Ezold and went 2-for-2 with a run scored in the Beacons late inning push. Daniel Bonito (Swampscott, Mass.) also ripped a pair of hits, along with Josh Lopez (New Haven, Conn.).
Baseball returns to action tomorrow when they travel to Lasell College for a 3 p.m. non-conference game.