ORANGE, CA -- With its back to the wall, the Williams College baseball team came up with a huge comeback Saturday, rallying from three runs down in the second game of a NESCAC West Division doubleheader to post a 5-3 victory.
The Ephs snapped a 10-game losing streak with the victory, improving to 2-10 overall, 1-2 in the West Division. They are scheduled to be at home Tuesday for a 4 p.m. game against Westfield State.
The Ephs trailed 3-0 after two innings in the nightcap, but scored three times against Panther starter Colin Waters in the third. With two outs and nobody on, Mike Stamas singled past the first base bag. Doug Schaffer then ripped a single to right and both runners moved up on a passed ball. Ball four to Eric Pappas also resulted in a passed ball, allowing Stamas to score the first run. Senior Jack Roberts followed with a shot down the right-field line for a two-run double that tied the score.
It stayed 3-3 until the Williams seventh. Erik Mini opened the inning with a double off Middlebury reliever Robert Erickson. Alex Panstares put down a sacrifice bunt and reached first on a throwing error. Stamas then grounded an opposite-field single into left to score Mini with the go-ahead run. One out later, Pappas had an RBI-single to plate the insurance run.
First-year Williams hurlers George Caroll and Bryan Woolley shined on the mound for the Ephs. Carroll went the first seven frames, scattering seven hits while walking four. He did not allow a run after the second inning. Woolley earned the save, throwing two clean innings. He retired the Panthers in order in the bottom of the ninth to close out the win and allowed no hits or walks or baserunners over his two frames. He fanned one batter.
Stamas was 2 for 5 for the Ephs. Pappas was 2 for 3.
In the opener Saturday, the Ephs received a quality start from Kyle Dean for six innings, but the Panthers scored two in the fourth and four more in the bottom of the eighth to post the 6-1 victory.
Middlebury starter Will Oppenheim worked his way out of jam after jam to keep Middlebury close. The Ephs had five hits and walked five times against Oppenheim, but scored just a lone run. They left seven men on base over the seven frames,
Williams did take a 1-0 lead in the first when Mike Stamas led off with a single and came around to score on a wild pitch. Middlebury scored twice in its fourth on three consecutive two-out hits. Hayden Smith singled with two outs and scored the tying run when Allen Guild doubled. Guild scored when Sam Graf singled to left for a 2-1 lead.
The Ephs had five hits in the loss. Stamas was 3 for 4 with a run scored. Dean took the loss, going 5 2/3 innings and allowing eight hits and six runs, all earned. He walked one and struck out two.