Baseball Swept By Clark In NEWMAC Doubleheader

Baseball Swept By Clark In NEWMAC Doubleheader

Springfield, Mass. – April 15, 2017 – The Springfield College baseball team was swept in a New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) doubleheader on Saturday afternoon at Berry-Allen Field.  Clark won the opener, 6-3, before posting a 13-7 victory in the second contest.

The victories bump Clark's record to 22-9, 7-6 in conference play, while the Pride dropped to 11-10, 5-5. 

Springfield will play again on Monday evening when it makes the short trip to Holyoke to face Elms at Mackenzie Field for a 6:00 contest.

Game One -- Clark 6, Springfield 3

Both starting pitchers were in command early, allowing a combined four hits through the first four innings before Clark scratched out of the game's first run in the top of the fifth.  Tyler Hutchinson (Greene, Maine) hit a towering triple to right center and came across the plate on a groundout by Derek Lefebvre (Groton, Mass.).

Springfield's Brandon Drabinski (Lisbon, Conn.) tied the game up in the bottom of the sixth, blistering a two-out single to left field to score Chad Shade (Pittsfield, Mass.) from second base.  Clark answered back in the top of the seventh, as Lefebvre connected on a base hit that landed just in front of a sprawling Shade, and Hutchinson took advantage of the ball rolling to the warning track to score from first.  

The Cougars opened up a four-run advantage in the eighth thanks a three-run homer over the right field fence by Teddy Downing (Cambridge, Mass.).

Springfield put together a two-out surge in the bottom of the frame, getting  a run-scoring double down the right field line by Mark Joao (Wappinger Falls, N.Y.) to score Peter Marsicano (Allentown, N.J.) from second.  Dranbinski followed with another run-scoring single to left to make it a 5-3 contest heading into the ninth.

Clark tacked on an insurance run in the ninth, making the most of a leadoff walk by Hutchinson, as pinch runner Kyle Shaw (Litchfield, N.H.) scored from second following the Pride's third fielding error of the game.

After Kyle Allen (Westerly, R.I.) reached on an error to lead off the ninth, singles by Jake Gleason (South Dennis, Mass.) and Matt Fraioli (Stamford, Conn.) loaded up the bases for Springfield with no outs.  However, Clark's Downing delivered a ground out and a pair of strikes outs to clinch the win and earn the save.

Brian Johnson (East Haddam, Conn.) took the loss for Springfield as he allowed three runs, two earned, in 7.1 innings of work while striking out seven. Drabinski led the Pride's efforts at the plate, going 3-for-4 with two RBI.

Cal Slepkow (Rehoboth, Mass.) got the win for Clark, tossing eight innings of eight-hit ball.  He struck out four and did not surrender a walk while giving up three earned runs.  Downing picked up the save, striking out two in the ninth.   Hutchinson and Kyle Bonicki (Waterbury, Conn.) each totaled two hits, while Downing added three RBI and Lefebvre drove in a pair.

 Game Two -- Clark 13, Springfield 7

The Cougars jumped all over the Pride to start the second game of the twinbill, producing two runs off three hits in the opening inning.  Kyle Bonicki (Waterbury, Conn.) ripped a one-out double to right center and came round to score on a hard-hit single by Adam Chochrek (Foxboro, Mass.).  Two batters later, Tyler Hutchinson (Greene, Maine) cracked a run-scoring single to give the Cougars an early 2-0 advantage.

Clark tacked on a run in the third as Chockrek led off the inning with a double down the right field line and crossed the plate on a Ryan Ruhlin (Portland, Maine) sacrifice fly.

Springfield manufactured a pair of runs in the bottom of the third to make it a one-run game.  Brandon Russo (Lisbon, Conn.) earned a leadoff walk, and after advancing to third on a failed pick off, scored on a Chad Shade (Pittsfield, Mass.) sacrifice fly.  Logan Barrett (Petersham, Mass.) later dropped in a bloop single to center, allowing Mark Joao (Wappingers Falls, N.Y.) to score.   

Clark answered right back up with four runs in the fourth, highlighted by Chochrek blistering a double down the left field line with the bases loaded which resulted in three runs.  Springfield plated a pair in the bottom of the fourth to keep things close, as both Russo and Jake Gleason (South Dennis, Mass.) scored after previously reaching on base knocks.

However, Clark erupted for four more runs in the sixth as its lead ballooned to 11-4.  The Cougars took advantage of a pair of Springfield miscues in the field, and Kyle Shaw (Litchfield, N.H.) registered a two-run single to right as the visitors took control of the game.  

Kyle Allen (Westerly, R.I.) would respond by drilling a two-run shot over the left field fence for Springfield in the bottom of the seventh before Clark added two runs of their own in the ninth off a RBI triple from Bonicki and another run-scoring single by Chochrek.  

Joao accounted for the game's final run with a solo homer to lead off the ninth, but the Cougars would snuff off Springfield's late rally to earn the conference win.