Panthers win nightcap after extra-inning loss in opener
BROCKTON, Mass. – Junior Jonathan Bishop (Woburn, Mass.) pitched a complete-game victory for Plymouth State University Saturday evening, allowing just one run and striking out 10 batters as the Panthers earned a split of their Little East Conference baseball doubleheader against the University of Massachusetts Boston played at Campanelli Stadium.
The Beacons needed two runs in the bottom of the ninth in the opener to force extra innings, then pulled it out in the 10th for a 4-3 victory. PSU came back to take the nightcap 6-1 on the strength of Bishop’s pitching and a five-run fourth inning, including a two-run double by freshman Jeff Runnals (Wolfeboro, N.H.) and a three-run double by junior Ryan McIntosh (Lincoln, N.H.).
Plymouth State, which has won seven of its last nine games, now has a 12-21 record overall and 4-8 in conference play, while UMass Boston, which won the LEC and NCAA regional championships and went to the NCAA College World Series last season, now stands at 16-17 overall and 7-5 in the Little East.
PSU took a 3-1 lead into the ninth inning of the opener. Sophomore Steve Beard (Middleton, Mass.) doubled and scored in the fifth inning and cracked an RBI triple in the sixth, and junior Luke Merrill (Pittsburg, N.H.) clouted a lead-off home run, his third of the season, in the seventh.
With the Beacons down to their final out in the bottom of the ninth, senior Connor Reinfurt (Manchester, N.H.) singled through the left side to knock in one run and after a Plymouth State error that would have ended the game, senior Jose Ramon Santos (Tenares, D.R.) singled to right center to bring in the tying run. UMB won it in the 10th on an RBI single by junior Ty Buccetti (Wallingford, Conn.)
Sophomore Daniel Heefner (Tracy, Calif.) earned the win in relief for the Beacons, but sophomore Dan Gambill (Lake Worth, Fla.) was the key factor on the hill for UMass Boston with 3.1 innings of scoreless, one-hit relief. Junior lefty James Dalton (Apopka, Fla.) started and went six innings, scattering 10 hits and allowing three runs while striking out five.
Junior hurler Bobby Chatfield (Sharon, Conn.) was solid through the first 6.2 innings for PSU. He allowed 11 base runners on seven hits and four walks, but surrendered just one run while striking out seven and exited with the lead. Senior reliever Bryant Lausberg (Somersworth, N.H.) took over but fell to 2-4 with the loss.
The Beacons grabbed the lead in the first inning of game two but the Panthers responded with five runs in the fourth to pull away. Merrill singled to right field, junior Mike Cappiello (Westfield, N.J.) walked and sophomore Joe Perry (Sandwich, Mass.) singled to right to load the bases for Runnals, who doubled down the right field line for two runs. After sophomore David Tammaro (Cheshire, Conn.) walked to reload the bases, UMB got a pair of strike outs, but McIntosh doubled to left field to bring everyone home. Merrill and McIntosh finished with two hits and Lausberg led the way with a 3-for-5 effort.
The Beacons return to action Sunday when they host Endicott College at noon at Yetten Field in Waltham, Mass., while the Panthers travel to Northfield, Vt. on Monday to face Norwich University at 4:00 p.m.
(Courtesy of UMass Boston Sports Information)
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