Springfield, Mass. - April 17, 2010 - The Springfield College baseball team dropped a pair of heartbreaking one-run games at Coast Guard on Saturday afternoon in a New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) doubleheader. Coast Guard edged the Pride, 3-2, in the opener before hitting a two-run walk-off homer in the second to win 13-12.
Coast Guard, which entered the day needing a sweep to make the conference tournament, improves to 9-16 overall and 4-8 while Springfield drops to 12-18 overall and 3-9 in the conference and will not qualify for the NEWMAC tournament. The Bears will be on the road on Wednesday in the opening round of the double elimination tournament.
Freshman Tyler Babkiewich hit a walkoff two-run homer in the bottom of the ninth capping a wild second game as Coast Guard completed a sweep. In game two, sophomore Karl Quist hit a two-out grand slam in the eighth inning as Springfield, which trailed 10-5 in the fourth inning, took a 12-10 lead.
Coast Guard scored a single run in the eighth, to cut the deficit to 12-11, on an RBI ground out by freshman Eric Gerken scoring freshman Nolan Gallagher who led off the inning with a single. In the home half of the ninth, junior Graham Sherman pinch hit and was hit by a pitch to lead off the inning and following a strikeout, Babkiewich hit the game winning homer to right field.
Springfield led 4-1 as the Pride plated four runs in the second on a two-run single by senior Joe Kropa, an RBI double by sophomore Mike Corletta and a sacrifice fly by junior John Smaltz.
The Pride's lead grew to 5-1 before Coast Guard scored four in the third on four straight two out hits. Freshman Cameron Caroll had an RBI single, senior Ryan Milligan then delivered an RBI double, Gerken had an RBI single before freshman Mike Massaro’s RBI double tied the game 5-5.
The Bears scored five times in the fourth, again doing all the damage with two outs. Senior John Jeffares doubled, freshman Nolan Gallagher walked, then the same four players who did the damage in the third again got to Springfield starter senior Ryan White. Carroll and Milligan had RBI singles, Gerken had a two-run double before Massaro’s RBI single gave the Bears a 10-5 lead.
Springfield got three runs in the sixth to chase Coast Guard starter Jesse Karr. Schmaltz had an RBI single and junior Brian Harris added an RBI double and a run also scored on a wild pitch as the Pride cut the deficit to 10-8.
In the eighth, junior Louie Nucci doubled to lead off, freshman Riley Beecher got the next two batters before intentionally walking Schmaltz and then hitting Harris to load the bases and set the stage for Quist’s grand slam to right field.
Carroll was 5 for 5 with three RBI’s in game two while Babkiewich had three hits, Gerken had two hits and four RBI’s and Milligan, and Masaro each added two hits and two RBI’s for Coast Guard. Schmaltz had two hits and two RBI’s in game two for the Pride.
Junior Ben Barrett retired the last two batters in the ninth and picked up his first win of the season for Coast Guard while Adam DeFelice (0-2) took the loss.
In the opener, Coast Guard again relied on two out magic as three straight singles in the sixth broke a 2-2 tie giving the Bears the 3-2 win. Gallagher, Carroll singled before Milligan delivered the eventual game winning hit an RBI single to left off starter senior Jon Wurster (0-1).
Springfield struck first in the first on an RBI single by Schmaltz. Coast Guard tied the game 1-1 in the third on an RBI double by Babkiewich. The Pride took a 2-1 lead in the fourth as junior Michael Micik grounded into a fielder’s choice scoring Harris, who singled. The Bears tied the game in the fifth as Gerken led off with a triple and scored a on sacrifice fly by Massaro.
Freshman Tyler Vieira (1-1) worked 2 1/3 innings of no-hit relief to get his first career win.