WILLIAMSTOWN, MA – The Williams College Ephs (9-21, 4-8) took on the Skidmore College Thoroughbreds (15-22, 8-15) in the final two games of the season. Saturday's double header marked the completion of the series started on Wednesday.
In the first game, Skidmore were the first to get on the stat sheet with a three-lead run in the second inning. They continued to extend their lead throughout the game, and a few late runs for the Ephs was not enough to cut the deficit. Moving into the second portion of the double header, Skidmore was up a game with a score of 6-3. In the second game, Williams returned with 15 runs in the first two innings. They managed to keep Skidmore scoreless and only continued to extend their lead. The final score was 21-0 Ephs.
A solid defensive effort on both sides kept the first game scoreless in the first inning. The Ephs looked primed to take the lead in the bottom of the first when Sophomore Mike Stamas singled on his first at bat, stole second, and advanced to third on a ground out. Unfortunately, the opportunity was cut short when a strike out moved the game into the second.
In the second, Skidmore got the ball rolling with their first runs of the day. Catcher Patrick Geiger began with a double down the infield line. Two batters later, senior Hayden Smith followed suit with a double to left center which brought Geiger across home plate. Two fly outs put the pressure on Skidmore with the end of their at bat imminent. Left fielder Nate Scheinman kept the inning going for the Thoroughbreds when he reached first on a throwing error by the third baseman. Smith advanced to third and both runners were quickly batted in by a third double, this time from senior Nate Fronte. The Ephs came back up to bat with the score now at 3-0 Skidmore.
Eph junior Kellen Hatheway looked to create a chance for the Ephs in his first at bat. He found first base with a single to left center. A play later he advanced to second with a stolen base. Senior Adam Regensburg continued the run when he snuck one past the first baseman. Hatheway advanced to third, but neither were able to reach home plate when the two final outs were recorded two batters later.
The third and fourth inning quieted down for both teams. Mike Fogarty and Eph senior Adam Duslky both managed to make it to second base in the third and fourth innings respectively, but strong pitching and fielding ensured no scoring opportunities were found.
In the top of the fifth inning, Skidmore extended its lead further. Fogarty managed a single to third base. Senior Shawn Klier came up big when he tripled deep to right center to drive Fogarty home. On the following batter, Geiger sacrifice ground out to the short stop which gave Klier the opportunity to score Skidmore's fifth run of the game. The game moved into the bottom of the fifth with Skidmore up 5-0.
In the bottom of the fifth, the Ephs managed their first run of the game. Junior Tom Benz reached on a fielder's choice which put his previously walked teammate out at second. He advanced to second soon after on a throwing error. Stamas made contact for the second time that game two batters later with a single which batted in Benz. A strike out and reach on a fielder's choice ended the inning but cut the deficit to four.
In the sixth, Skidmore and Williams kept each other mutually scoreless again. For a moment, Skidmore had the bases loaded after a fielding error, single, and walk put runners on first second and third. However, a well-executed double play pushed Williams out of a dangerous position.
In the seventh, Skidmore began with two quick outs. What looked like a quick out bat developed when Jake Hardy was walked as the third batter. Smith singled to right center on the following play and pushed Hardy to second. A final single by sophomore Justin LaRose brought Hardy home and posted Skidmore's final run of the first game.
In the bottom of the seventh, the Ephs mounted a comeback attempt that closed the deficit but was not enough to tie the game. Senior Adam Regensburg was walked as the first batter for Williams. Benz pushed him to third with a single up the middle. With a man on first and third, first year Erik Mini reached on a fielder's choice which got him to first, brought Regensburg home, but put Benz out at second. Two batters later, junior Doug Schaffer managed a double to right field which brought Mini across home plate. The inning ended shortly after with the first game's final score of 6-3.
In the first inning of the second game, the Ephs came out firing after keeping Skidmore runless in their first at bat. Stamas continued a dominant performance for the day with a double to center field. Junior Kellen Hatheway followed his lead with another double to left field which drove Stamas home and scored the Ephs first run of the inning. Senior Adam Dulsky was walked, and Mini singled with a bunt to load the bases for the Ephs. Schaffer delivered once again with a single through the right side which brought Hatheway and Dulsky home. The three run at bat looked to be in danger when a strike out handed the Ephs their second out of the inning. With the pressure on Benz knocked a ball deep into right center which allowed Schaffer and Mini to score. The inning ended shortly after with a 5-0 lead for Williams.
The second inning followed a similar trajectory to the first. In a strong pitching showing, left handed junior Jack Bohen struck out all three batters he faced. Looking to keep the momentum going, Stamas once again stepped up as the first batter of the inning for the Ephs. In a tremendous solo effort, he knocked a single to center field, stole second, and advanced to third on a failed pickoff attempt. Senior Jack Roberts delivered with his first contact of the day to bring Stamas home and reach first base. Two plays later saw Roberts advancing to second on a passed ball, and Hatheway hit by a pitch to reach first. Dulsky knocked a ball into the outfield to reach second base, push Hatheway to third, and allow Roberts to reach home for the Ephs second run of the inning. Mini stepped to the plate with two men on and not a single out recorded and knocked another single to right field. He advanced to second when the right fielder's throw went awry. The error gave Hatheway and Dulsky the chance to score the Ephs' eighth and ninth runs of the game. Mini advanced to third quickly after on a wild pitch and Schaffer reached first on another walk. First year outer fielder Ed Manzella singled as the next batter to load the bases for the Ephs. Benz and Regensburg recorded consecutive singles to advance the lead to eleven with Mini and Schaffer scoring respectively. With three men on and still only one out recorded, Roberts stepped back up to bat. He knocked a deep homer to right field which batted in three of his teammates and extended Williams' lead to 15-0. Another Hatheway double on the next batter was followed by the final two outs of the inning. The second inning marks the most runs scored by the Ephs or any team they have played throughout the season.
The Ephs delivered the game's next period of action in their following at bat. Schaffer filled a familiar role with a triple to right center as the first batter. A strike out on Manzella was followed by Benz's sacrifice fly out to center field which brought Schaffer across home plate. The inning ended shortly after with a final ground out to the pitcher.
The fourth inning repeated the third's results exactly. With Skidmore kept scoreless, the Ephs came back up to bat again. This time two quick strike outs put the pressure on Williams. Hatheway answered the call with a double to left center. Dulsky followed suit with a single up the middle which gave Hatheway the opportunity to reach home plate. The inning ended a very successful period of scoring for the Ephs with the score now at 17-0.
In the fifth inning, Skidmore and Williams kept the other from reaching base. The defensive effort moved the game into the sixth where Skidmore's Fogarty made contact with a triple which ultimately amounted to nothing with another strong Eph fielding and pitching showing.
The bottom of the sixth saw another increase in the lead. Roberts maintained his control over the game with a double to left center. He advanced to third soon after when a wild pitch and walk put Hatheway on first. Likewise, Hatheway advanced a base on a wild pitch to put a man on second and third for Dulsky's next at bat. Dulsky delivered another double to left field to bring both his teammates home and the Ephs only runs of the inning. Moving into the seventh, the Ephs had taken a nineteen-run lead.
Skidmore found their legs in the seventh and looked to get on the scoresheet for the first time that game. First Year Andrew Knight made their first meaningful contact of the game with a single to center field. Fronte was walked as the second batter to put two men on. Two strike outs put the pressure on for Andrew Aikins' at bat. He managed to reach on a fielder's choice but Fronte's out at second ended the brief opportunity for the Thoroughbreds.
The bottom of the seventh saw an uncharacteristically short inning for the Ephs with a ground out, fly out, and reach on a fielder's choice.
In the top of the eighth, junior Will O'Brien stepped into replace Bohen's incredible performance on the mound. He walked his first batter but then quickly forced a ground into a double play and a strike out to make it a quick Skidmore at bat.
In the bottom of the eighth, the Ephs finished out their victory with two final runs. Roberts was walked as the first batter. Hatheway reached on a fielder's choice by the pitcher which allowed Roberts to advance to second. Dulsky was walked for his final at bat as an Eph to put three Williams runners on base. First year John Digravio stepped up with a single to right field which pushed all his teammates forward a base and scored the Ephs 20th run. Schaffer followed suit as the next batter when he grounded into a double play which gave Hatheway the opportunity to score Williams' final run of the game.
One more strong defensive effort ended the Ephs' season on a very strong note.
The Ephs graduate four seniors who have been vital players throughout their four years here. Left fielder Jack Roberts, righty pitcher Michael Cassidy, outfielder Adam Regensburg, and catcher Adam Dulsky will be sorely missed and leave large shoes to fill for next season.
The Ephs finish this season with a record of 9-21, and 4-8 in conference. Their final performance leaves a promising opening for next year.