Springfield, Mass. - April 14, 2014 - The Springfield College baseball team put together a four-run ninth inning, but visiting Brandeis escaped with the 8-7 win on Berry-Allen Field on Monday afternoon.
The Pride trailed by five runs heading into the bottom of the ninth, but scored four times on three hits to come within a run. Springfield falls to 12-11 with the loss while Brandeis improves to 12-14 with the win.
Springfield was led by Billy Peterson (Wareham, Mass.), Jared Hopkins (Cranston, R.I.) and Corey Wilcox (Montville, Conn.) each with two hits. Steve Starr (Lebanon, Conn.) and Brent Poulin (Atascadero, Calif.) each drove in two runs.
Brandeis was led by Kyle Brenner (Brookfield, Mass.), who went 3-for-5 with two runs batted in. Greg Heineman (Wilbraham, Mass.) picked up three RBI's while Connor Doyle (Avon, Conn.) tacked on two hits for the Judges.
Springfield got its first base runner in the second inning, as CJ Monroe (Wolcott, Conn.) was hit by a pitch. Fernandez got out of the jam, though with a fly ball to right field and a ground ball to first base.
Peterson picked up Springfield's first hit of the afternoon in the fourth inning on a single that hopped over the leap of the second baseman and into right field, but Fernandez cleared the bases on a double play ball in the next at-bat. With two outs in the inning, Sean Smith (Broken Arrow, Okla.) launched a double into deep left center, but Fernandez got out of the inning in the next at bat on a fly ball to left.
Brandeis got on the board in the top of the fifth, jumping out to a four run advantage. Sam Miller (Sudbury, Mass.) took a lead off walk to start the inning and Brian Allen (Salem, N.H.) and Brian Ing (Sandwich, Mass.) followed it up with back-to-back singles to load the bases with no outs in the inning. Doyle drove in the game's first run on an opposite field single, scoring Miller. Tom McCarthy (Yonkers, N.Y.) made it a two-run game, reaching on an error that scored Allen. The Pride picked up two-straight fielders choice outs, but at a cost of two runs scored, giving the Judges a 4-0 lead. Williams got out of the inning when Smith picked off Brenner at first base.
Springfield got on the board in the bottom of the sixth inning to make it a 4-1 game when Starr scored on a wild pitch after reaching on a fielder's choice. The Pride tacked on another run in the seventh after Dan Green (Oakland, N.J.) pitched hitless inning of relief in the top of the seventh. With one out in the bottom half of the inning, Adam Zandri (Ridgefield, Conn.) had a pinch hit single to left field and scored on a double by Hopkins for a 4-2 game. The Pride came within one run one a sacrifice fly by Starr to deep right field, scoring Wilcox to make it a 4-3 game.
Brandeis put up an insurance run in the top of the eighth, as Heineman reached on an error and later scored on a single by Ryan Tettemer (Westfield, Mass.) to give the Judges a 5-3 lead.
The Judges built up a five-run lead with three more runs in the ninth. Heineman drove in two on a double to left and Brenner brought home Heineman on a single to center to take an 8-3 lead.
Springfield made it interesting in the bottom of the ninth, nearly erasing the five run deficit with four runs to come within one. The Pride loaded the bases on two-straight hit batters and a single by Wilcox. With one out in the inning, Starr beat out a grounder to third base, scoring Dan Bergami (Schenectady, N.Y). Poulin drove in Wilcox and Keith Cotnoir (Westhampton, Mass.) on a double to the gap in left center and the Pride made it a one-run game on a ground ball out by Frank Calabrese (East Longmeadow, Mass.). Brenner, pitching in relief got out of the jam one a grounder to second base to escape with the win.
Alex Williams (East Hartford, Conn.) took the loss for Springfield (1-2) going six innings, allowing six hits, four runs, three earned with two strikeouts. Brandeis starter Elio Fernandez (Bronx, N.Y.) (2-2) earned the win, going 6.1 innings, giving up seven hits, three runs, all earned.
Springfield will be back in action on Tuesday, hosting Emerson for a 3:30 p.m. start. Brandeis will also play on Tuesday, heading to Johnson & Wales for a 3:30 start.