Springfield, Mass. -- April 12, 2011 -- The Wheaton College baseball team pounded out 20 hits, including four each by Hal Landers (Salem, N.H.) and Eric Jensen (Gorham, N.H.), in defeating Springfield College, 14-5, this afternoon at SC's Berry-Allen Field beneath a gray sky. Despite two hits each from the Pride's John Schmaltz and Frank Calabrese, SC was eliminated from NEWMAC post-season play.
Wheaton is now 19-6 overall, 10-5 in the NEWMAC. Springfield is now 9-17 overall, 3-12 in the league.
The Lyons took a 5-0 lead after three and a half innings, and were in control behind the Wheaton starter, freshman righthander Alec Palioca (Wrentham, Mass.). But Palioca got into trouble in the bottom of the fourth, when SC scored four of its five runs. Palioca went 3 2/3 innings, giving up just three hits, but he walked four and struck out one. All four runs he allowed were earned.
Springfield senior starter Steve Forbes (Northport, N.Y.) was tagged for 12 hits and nine runs (all earned) in 4 2/3 innings. He also walked four and hit two batters, striking out three.
Wheaton followed Palioca with five relievers who were largely effective. As a group, they gave up only one run. The last four, senior D.J. McGee (Worcester, Mass.), senior Kevin Calabro (Andover, Mass.), junior David Longley (Brunswick, Me.), and freshman Ryan Grant (Easton, Mass.) did not give up a hit in the final four innings. In fact, they set down the last 12 batters they faced from the sixth inning on.
The winning pitcher turned out to be sophomore Justin Dickinson (Stratford, Conn.), now 1-0. Forbes, now 2-3, took the loss.
Wheaton struck for three runs in the very first inning. After the first three batters all singled to load the bases, junior Dan Haugh (Andover, Mass.) hit a sacrifice fly to center. Later in the inning, sophomore Paul O'Neill (Framingham, Mass.) and senior Tad Skelley (Wolfeboro, N.H.) each walked to force in a run.
Wheaton added single runs in the third and the fourth.
In the SC fourth, Calabrese, a freshman from East Longmeadow, Mass., singled home the first Pride run. Junior Karl Quist (New Preston, Conn.) then doubled in the second run. Another run scored on a ground out by senior Mike Robilotto (East Meadow, N.Y.). And that was followed by an RBI-single to left by freshman Mike McGowan (Franklin, Mass.).
No sooner had SC closed it to 5-4 when the Lyons scored four more of their own in the top of the fifth, all after two were out. Jensen, a sophomore, had one of the inning's big hits a two-run single. The other was by sophomore Dan Gosovsky (Andover, Mass.). His two-run single gave Wheaton a 9-4 lead.
Schmaltz of Cromwell, Conn. led off SC's fifth with a single to right. He eventually scored on a single by Calabrese.
Wheaton added three more in the seventh and two more in the eighth.
Springfield will continue conference play on Friday afternoon when it hosts Coast Guard at 3:30 pm.