MIDDLETOWN, CT- The Williams College baseball team (20-7, 8-2) started strong in Game 1 and rallied late in Game 2 to sweep a crucial NESCAC doubleheader at Wesleyan, 10-5 and 13-8. With the wins, the Ephs clinch a spot in next month's NESCAC Championship Tournament.
"These were just two great wins on the road today," said head coach Bill Barrale. "It a nice feeling to know that we're in the [NESCAC] tournament and still have a chance to host."
Game 1 featured a strong offensive outburst in the first four innings and a great start on the mound for the Ephs. Junior Al Mathews (3-4, two runs, one RBI) got it going in the first inning with an RBI double and first year Stephen Maier (2-5, one run, two RBI) kept it going with a two-run single in the second.
Junior Chad Brown (2-4, one run, four RBI) had two two-run singles in the third and fourth, while senior Taylor Mikell (2-3, one run, one RBI) brought in the other Eph run with an RBI ground rule double in the fourth. Senior ace Dan Benz (six IP, seven K's) pitched six innings of one-hit ball before giving up two runs in the seventh. Fellow senior Zach Stone gave up three more runs before closing the door on the Wesleyan offense and completing the 10-5 win.
Junior Jim Entwisle went 2-3 with two runs and first year Cameron Susk went 2-4 with two runs to round out the strong numbers for the Ephs.
"Dan Benz pitched a great game for us and it was a great start to the day," said Barrale.
The Ephs were not quite as fortunate in the second game, as they found themselves on the losing end of a 5-1 score after four innings. Junior Paul Burgdorf pitched three innings of tough luck ball, giving up five runs, but only one earned.
In the seventh, the Ephs got a SAC fly from junior Robin Allemand (2-5, one run, two RBI), an RBI single from Mathews (2-5, three runs, one RBI), and an RBI single from Mikell (2-4, two runs, three RBI) to pull within one, only to see the Cardinals tack on a run in the bottom half of the inning.
A 6-4 Cardinal lead, however, would not last very long, as the Ephs pounded out seven runs on seven hits and one error in the eighth. Most of the damage came on a two run triple by Mikell, and two RBI singles, and surprisingly the inning could have been much worse, as the Cardinals forced sophomore James Allison to line into a double play on a well hit ball to the third baseman to end the threat.
First year Henry Marino came on in relief and pitched the final six innings to pick up his third win of the year. Rounding out the offensive numbers for the Ephs were Stone (2-4, one run, one RBI), Brown (3-4, one RBI), and first years Maier (2-5, one run, two RBI), Susk (3-6, one run, three RBI), and Ben Oliva (2-4, three runs).
"Their starter shut us down early, but when we were able to get to the bullpen we capitalized on it," said Barrale. "Everyone in our lineup, top to bottom, contributed on the day, and Henry Marino pitched very well."
The Ephs conclude the three game series tomorrow with home game live from Bobby Combs Field. Tune in tomorrow as the game will be broadcasted live on the internet. Click here to view the live webcast beginning at 1 PM.