Elms and Lesley Advance to the Winners Bracket of the Baseball Tournament

Elms and Lesley Advance to the Winners Bracket of the Baseball Tournament

Attleboro, Mass. - Fourth seeded Lesley University earns the upset 5-4 victory over top seeded Mitchell College. The Lynx will face second seeded Elms College after the Blazers crused past Becker College 14-5.  

Mitchell will host the remainder of the tournament as they tee off against the Hawks in a win or go home game at 9:30a.m. The second game will feature Lesley and Elms at the conclusion of the first contest. 

#4 Lesley 5, #1 Mitchell 4

NEW LONDON, Conn. – Fourth-seeded Lesley University held on for a 5-4 upset over top-seeded Mitchell College to open the 2017 New England Collegiate Conference Baseball Championship on Saturday afternoon at Alumni Field.

The Lynx received a strong pitching performance from Tom Muratore and made the most of one big offensive inning to post their first-ever win in the tournament. Muratore improved to 7-3 on the year and allowed four runs (three earned) over 7.0 innings and struck out five.

J.P. Agiorgousis went 3-for-4 with an RBI to pace the Lesley offense while Vincent Taliercio and Steven DePalma each had a pair of hits. Mike Slaby also provided a big RBI double in the eighth inning to plate what proved to be the winning run.

Mitchell scratched across a run in the bottom of the first for an early lead. Tristan Hurley drew a leadoff walk and moved to third on a successful hit-and-run with Francis Prettitore. Tyler Pina followed with a sharply hit ball to second base and hustled down the line to beat out the double-play attempt, allowing Hurley to score with the game's first run.

In the second, Lesley put runners on the corners with no outs but came away scoreless. Mitchell starter Axel De Jesus pitched his way out of trouble, getting the first out with line drive to left field that was too shallow to score the runner from third. He then got a strikeout and fly ball to right to escape the jam with the one-run lead intact.

The Lynx sent eight batters to the plate in the third and scored four runs to take the lead. Taliercio and DePalma got things started with back-to-back singles with one out, and Ryan Pumphret tied the game with a double into the left-center gap. A slow roller by Matthew Warner brought in the go-ahead run, and Agiorgousis and Jacob Cervantes added to the margin with a double and single, respectively, to drive in runs.

Mitchell went to the bullpen in the fourth to get out of another jam. Lesley's leadoff man reached on an error and moved into scoring position on a sacrifice bunt. Jakari Pellegrini took the ball for the Mariners and ended the threat with a strikeout and pop up to keep the deficit at 4-1.

The Mariners scored twice in the fifth to climb back into the game. Steven Gonzalez knocked in the first run with a double to right-center and later scored the second on a two-bagger by Kyle Hartenstein.

Mitchell left runners in scoring position in both the sixth and seventh innings as Muratore worked out of jams to keep the Lynx in front. Lesley tacked on a crucial insurance run in the top of the eighth on a two-out RBI double by Slaby. A pair of defensive gems by Mitchell third baseman Peter Abate limited the damage, as he made diving stops to both his left and right to take away hits in the frame.

Muratore came out for the home half of the eighth but threw only one pitch that Garet Griffin slammed over the left field fence. With their lead cut in half, the Lynx turned to Nick Iadevaio out of the bullpen, and he recorded three quick outs to secure the lead.

Iadevaio retired the side in order in the ninth to nail down the victory, picking up his second save of the season. He didn't allow a hit in 2.0 innings of work.

De Jesus (5-5 overall) gave up four runs on six hits over 3.1 innings. Pellegrini yielded one run on five hits in 5.2 innings of relief.

The double-elimination tournament continues with three games on Sunday, May 7. Mitchell (27-12 overall) will play an elimination game against third-seeded Becker College at 9:30 a.m. Lesley (19-17-1 overall) will face second-seeded Elms College in Sunday's second game, which is scheduled to begin 30 minutes after the conclusion of the first.

Courtesy of Mitchell Athletics Communications.

#2 Elms 14, #3 Becker 5

HOLYOKE, Mass. – The second-seeded Elms College baseball team slugged past visiting three-seed Becker College, 14-5, in the opening game of the New England Collegiate Conference (NECC) Championship tournament at MacKenzie Stadium Saturday afternoon.

With the win, the Blazers (18-18) advance to the winner's game to face fifth-seeded Lesley University at 1:00 p.m. at Mitchell College. The Hawks (19-18) will battle top-seed Mitchell in an elimination game Sunday at 9:30 a.m.

After two scoreless frames, the Blazers grabbed a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the third as sophomore Alex Hoss knocked a leadoff single, and then scored on an RBI single from senior Stephen Harrison.

Elms added to their advantage with four runs in the home half of the fourth, sparked by leadoff walks by senior Tim Gelzinis and Brian Hungerford. With two outs and runners at first and second, the Blazers cranked out four straight RBIs singles. Hungerford touched home on an RBI single from junior Ben Ross, followed by RBI singles from senior Aedin Wadja and Harrison. Senior Jordan Zima capped the inning with an RBI single to centerfield, extend the Blazers lead to 5-0.

The Hawks got on the board in the top of the fifth on an RBI groundout from senior Vaibhav Desai. Elms carried their momentum into the bottom of the frame, loading the bases with one out. Hungerford scored on a Hawks fielding error, followed by an RBI single from Harrison. Zima brought home a pair of runs on an RBI single up the middle, and then Harrison came home on another Becker error to push the Blazers ahead 10-1.

In the top of the eighth, Becker senior Niko Bedell launched a no-doubt solo home run to left field, followed by an RBI single from sophomore Daniel Diaz and senior Trevor Read scored on a Blazers error to trim the deficit to 10-4.

Elms tacked four runs on the scoreboard in the bottom of the eighth, featuring a two-run double from senior Kyle Platner, to extend their lead to 14-4. Becker senior T.J. Sempkowski smashed a solo home run in the ninth for the final run of the day as Elms captured the 14-5 victory.

Harrison and Zima drove in four runs apiece to lead the Blazers offense, Harrison went 4-for-5 and scored twice, while Wadja and senior Dan Brunetti scored three times each. Platner knocked in two runs, while Hungerford, Ross, and Hoss all crossed home twice in the win. Freshman Jacob Graveline (5-3) claimed the win on the hill in his playoff debut, limiting the Hawks to one run on six hits with five strikeouts.

Bedell and Diaz tallied three hits and an RBI each for the Hawks. Desai and sophomore Tanyon Ventres added two hits in the loss. Senior starter Tyler Wagar took a no decision, allowing five runs on seven hits with a strikeout, while junior Jorge Grullon (0-3) gave up three runs in relief in the loss.

Courtesy of Elms Athletics Communications.

Saturday, May 6
3:00 p.m.  - Game 1: #4 Lesley 5, #1 Mitchell 4
3:00 p.m. - Game 2: #2 Elms 14, #3 Becker 5

Sunday, May 7 (at Mitchell)
9:30 a.m. - Game 3: Mitchell vs Becker
Game 4: Elms vs. Lesley
Game 5: Winner of Game 3 vs. Loser of Game 4 

Monday, May 8 (at Mitchell)
11:30 a.m. - Game 6: Winner of Game 4 vs. Winner of Game 5
Game 7: (If necessary)