Ephs swept by Middlebury in NESCAC West showdown, 2-1 & 11-4

Jack Cloud '17
Jack Cloud '17

TUCSON, AZ. — The Williams College baseball team wrapped up its Spring Break trip out West Saturday, losing both ends of a doubleheader to NESCAC West Division rival Middlebury, 2-1 in the opener and 11-4 in the second game.

Williams is now 5-10 on the season, 1-2 in the NESCAC West. The Ephs are scheduled to play at Westfield State Tuesday at 4 p.m. 

Game one featured a pitcher's duel between Eph junior Tyler Duff and Middlebury's John Bunting.

The Panthers got on the board with a single tally in the bottom of the second inning as Ryan Rizzo had an RBI-single. The Ephs tied the game with one run in the top of the fourth inning. Doug Schaffer and Jack Cloud singled to start the frame. Tom Benz drove home Schaffer with a sacrifice fly.

The score remained knotted at 1-1 until the bottom of the seventh inning. The Panthers put runners on first and third before a wild pitch allowed the winning run to score. 

Bunting picked up his first collegiate win going all seven innings. He allowed one run on three hits with three strikeouts and two walks.  Duff took the hard-luck loss, going six-plus innings with two runs on seven hits with five strikeouts and a walk. Schaffer went 2-2 with a run scored for the Ephs, while Cloud hit 1 for 3. 

Williams took an early lead in the nightcap when on first-inning doubles from Adam Regensburg and Schaffer, but the Panthers erupted for six runs in the bottom of the third. The big blow of the rally came off the bat of Raj Palekar, who laced a bases-clearing triple to center field and gave Middlebury a four-run cushion. Alex Deutsch made it 6-1 when he drove in Palekar on a single through the right side.

Williams made it a 7-2 game in the top of the sixth on Cloud's RBI single to plate Schaffer, who had singled.

Will O'Brien took the loss for Williams, going the first three innings and allowing six runs on six hits.