BOSTON, Mass. – UMass Boston extended their win-streak to a season-best seven straight as they earned a Little East Conference sweep over Plymouth State University Saturday afternoon at Monan Park.
GM1 - UMass Boston 10, Plymouth State University 4
GM2 – UMass Boston 6, Plymouth State University 0
UMass Boston (24-9, 9-3 Little East Conference)
Plymouth State University (15-17, 3-9 Little East Conference)
HOW IT HAPPENED
For the second straight weekend, the Beacons pitching staff was solid from start to finish as starters Dan Mantoni (Northbridge, Mass.) and Matt Tulley (Lowell, Mass.) combined for 13 strikeouts over 12.1 innings respectively.
At the plate, Chris Fowler (Barnstable, Mass.) extended his hit streak to 26-straight games as he went 5-for-8, which included one double, six RBI and one run scored. Also, having a big offensive day was Josh Lopez (New Haven, Conn.) as the junior second baseman continued his recent hot-streak. The New Haven native finished 4-for-7 with a double, an RBI and four runs scored.
In the opener, Mantoni had to battle through some tough innings on his way to his fourth win of the year. The senior righty allowed four runs on three hits, while also walking three. He did strikeout five before Bryan Kaufman (Farmingdale, N.Y.) came-in to close out the final three innings to earn his first save of the year. The righty allowed just four hits, and had a pair of strikeouts during his outing.
The Beacons scored seven of their 10 runs in the first three innings, while holding Plymouth State to just one run. Lopez led off the game with a single to record his 100th career hit, and would eventually score on an RBI single to right center by Kyle Boudrias (Medford, Mass.). The Beacons would get their second run of the afternoon on a sac-fly by Fowler. After an RBI single by Andrew Salta in the top of the second made it 2-1 UMB, the Beacons extended their lead to four with a three run second. The Beacons pushed their lead back to two on an infield error by the Panthers, before making it a 5-1 ball game thanks to a two-run single by Fowler through the right side.
In the third the Beacons continued to tack on the extra base hits as Luke Nagle (Pembroke, Mass.) and Charlie Huegi (Sandy Hook, Conn.) each ripped doubles. Huegi's double drove in Nagle, while an RBI single by Mantoni plated Huegi to make it 7-1.
Plymouth State chipped away at the Beacons lead scoring a pair of runs in the top of the fourth, followed by one in the fifth to make it 7-4. UMB pushed their lead back to four in the fifth, thanks to a sac-fly by Boudrias.
UMass went-on to clinch the win with a run in the seventh and eighth innings. The first four batters in the Beacons starting line-up recorded multiple hits in the game won win. Mantoni finished 3-for-3 with two RBI and three runs scored, while Fowler went 2-for-3 with four RBI.
The game one loss went to Ryan Perro, as he fell to 0-2 after allowing seven runs, six earned, on 10 hits, while only walking one and striking out one. The Beacons combined for 15 hits in the victory, while also forcing nine walks, three of which went to Nick Herzog.
Fowler continued to pound the ball in the nightcap as the junior went 3-for-5 for two RBI and a run scored. Lopez went 2-for-3 with a double, an RBI and two runs scored. Tulley's scoreless outing lasted 6.1 innings and included eight strikeouts and mere one walk and two hits.
The Beacons could have easily blown out the Panthers in game two as they stranded a combined nine runners through the first four innings. However, they had to settle for just one run in the first and one in the fourth to take a slim 2-0 lead.
They eventually gained some breathing room in the sixth thanks to a RBI single by Nagle and an RBI ground-rule double by Anthony Searles (Shelton, Conn.). In the seventh inning, the Beacons scored their final two runs of the day as Fowler and Lopez both drove in a run.
Dylan Gaita dropped to 3-2 on the year after allowing two runs on seven hits, while also walking four. In five innings of work Gaitia also had three strikeouts, but did hit three batters. After Tulley, Joe Maguire (Peabody, Mass.) and Bobby Tramondozzi (Peabody, Mass.) allowed just two hits, and two walks, while also striking out three over the final 2.2 innings.
BY THE NUMBERS
- With the sweep, the Beacons have now won six straight and nine of their last 10 against Plymouth State
- The Beacons have now swept the Panthers for three straight seasons, and for the first time at Monan Park
- Fowler extended his hit-streak to 26 games, while Nagle is currently hitting .600 in conference play having recorded 12 hits in 20 at-bats
- Lopez and Fowler are hitting .486 and .455 respectively against conference opponents with the two combining for 38 hits, 20 runs scored, 27 RBI, six doubles, two triples and five home runs this season.
- On the day, the Beacons combined for 28 hits, while limiting the Panthers to just 11
- Mantoni needs just one hit for the 200th of his career, while Boudrias sits just one hit away from his 100th.
The Beacons will host Endicott College on Monday at 7 p.m.