AMHERST, MA – The Williams College Baseball team (3-12, 2-4) traveled to Amherst College (11-6, 4-1) today to complete the third and final game of the series. Coming out of yesterday's double header, the Ephs dropped a game with a score of 11-9 and won a game with a score of 5-4. Today's matchup was originally scheduled to take place at home, but with recent weather the Eph's Bobby Coombs field is still unplayable. Action kicked off at 1:00 pm and ran for just under three hours.
After a tough first two innings the Ephs improved their game but were unable to overcome the initial deficit. The final score was 16-4 in favor of the Mammoths. Their success today earned them the 2-1 aggregate victory over the Ephs.
In the first inning, the Mammoths started strong with senior Max Steinhorn's single up the middle in his first at bat. Two plays later, he was batted in for Amherst's first run via an error by the second basemen. The Mammoths extended their lead to 2-0 when fellow senior Ariel Kenney was batted in through a reach on a fielder's choice. A combination of a strikeout and solid pitching ended the inning for Amherst. The Ephs started slow with two pop ups and a fly out.
Advancing into the second inning, the score remained at 2-0. A series of three walks loaded the bases for the Mammoths. After a pitcher change to left hander Brian Wooley, was followed by a double to right center, Amherst extended the lead to 5-0. The next two batters managed to double to right center and left field, respectively, to move the deficit to 7 runs. This was followed shortly by another single which brought home the Mammoth's sixth run of the inning. Another pitcher change to junior right hander Will O'Brien introduced some more calm to the game. Unfortunately, a combination of a fielding error and another run batted in gave Amherst a 10-0 advantage by the bottom of the second inning. The Ephs were unable to get on the board in the second inning with two strike outs and a ground out. The score remained at 10-0 moving into the third inning.
By the third inning, the Ephs found their stride in the field. A ground out, line out, and strike out ensured a short inning for the Mammoths. To keep the momentum going, junior Alex Panstares was the first Eph to get on base with a single down the infield line. Sophomore Mike Stamas followed suit two batters later with a single through the right side. First year Eric Pappas stepped up to the plate with two outs on the board and a runner on second and third. His single down the right field line batted in both Stamas and Panstares to make the score 10-2. Unfortunately, a ground out on the following play ended the inning for Williams.
Moving into the fourth, first year right hander Nehemiah Wilson stepped in as the Eph's fourth pitcher of the day. Williams kept their streak going with another scoreless inning for the Mammoths. A fly out, strike out, and ground out moved the game into the bottom of the fourth. Junior Kellen Hatheway stepped up for his second at bat of the day only to be walked via hit pitch. He eventually advanced to third after a line out, and first year Frank Stola's single to center field. Unfortunately, a second line out of the inning handed the Ephs their third out and ended the inning.
Entering the fifth inning, the score remained at 10-2. Another solid defensive effort from both teams meant the score remained unchanged moving into the sixth.
In the top of the sixth, the Mammoths earned a single on their first at bat. The runner advanced to third on a ground out and throwing error. He was eventually batted in off a double to center field. A single on the following at bat, brought in Amherst's 12th run of the day. A caught steal and fly out to the right fielder held the Mammoths to two runs for the inning. The Ephs started the bottom of the sixth strong. Hatheway earned a double to left field in the first at bat. He advanced to third on a passed ball, and was batted in by fellow junior Doug Schaffer's single on the next play. A quick series of three consecutive outs ended the inning for the Ephs, but their efforts cut the score to 12-3.
The Ephs began the seventh inning with another pitcher change. This time, first year Philip Barnett came in to replace Wilson. His first few pitches resulted in a walk and a line out to the third basemen. Unfortunately a stolen base and a single to right center extended the Mammoths' lead to 13-3. Two batters later, the Mammoths got their second run of the inning after a reach on a fielder's choice. From there, a line out to the short stop moved the game to the Ephs' at bat. Two fly outs and a strike out ended the inning quickly for Williams, and the game moved into the eighth with the score still at 14-3.
In the eighth inning, junior Tom Benz stepped in as the Ephs' next pitcher. The Mammoths continued their streak with their third consecutive inning with two runs. The first run came after Amherst managed to get players on second and third in their first three at bats. A ground out to the pitcher allowed Amherst to extend the lead to 15-3. With another runner on third, a fly out to right field ensured the Mammoths' last run of the game. Benz's strike out handed Amherst its final out of the inning. In the bottom of the eighth, Hatheway earned his second double of the game. Schaffers' ground out on the following play ensured Hatheway moved to third base. Junior David Kwan pinch hit for senior Adam Dulsky. His sacrifice fly out to center field brought Hatheway in for his second run of the day. The inning ended shortly after with the games' eventual final score of 16-4.
A strong showing in the field for both teams meant no runs were scored in the ninth inning. The game ended with the Ephs trailing the Mammoths by twelve runs.
Head Coach Bill Barrale commented on the teams performance: "The combination of walks and errors in the field made the game hard to win from the get go. We struggled a bit at pitching which further exacerbated our efforts."
The Ephs come away from the weekend 2-4 in conference games. Their next chance at competition will be on Tuesday at home against Trinity. The game begins at 4:00 pm with better forecasted conditions than this series against Amherst.