Holyoke, Mass. - April 17, 2013 - The Elms College baseball team took advantage of a pair of Springfield errors in the bottom of the ninth to rally for an 8-7 non-conference victory under the lights at Mackenzie Stadium.
With the win, Elms improves to 13-13 overall and picks up its second walk-off win in as many games, while Springfield falls to 11-16 on the season.
Tied at 7-7 heading into the bottom of the ninth inning, Zachary Dreher led off the inning with a single to left field and then moved to second on a fielding error by the left fielder to give the Blazers a runner in scoring position. Elms’ freshman RJ Lyrenmann entered as a pinch-runner and advanced to third on a fielder’s choice off the bat of senior center fielder Stephen Fisher. An intentional walk issued to sophomore right fielder Brady Forrest loaded the bases for Kevin Dwire who hit a ball to left field that was dropped allowing Lyrenmann to come home with the winning run.
Elms’ sophomore relief pitcher Geoffrey Frost, who entered after one batter in the top of the ninth, allowed a run on two hits and earned the win to improve to 3-0 on the season.
Springfield’s Mike McGowan pitched 1.2 innings of relief and allowed one unearned run on one hit and struck out two batters and suffered the loss to move to 1-1 overall.
The Pride took a 1-0 lead in the top of the second when McGowan scored on a wild pitch. The Blazers answered with two in the bottom half of the inning when Dreher singled to right to begin the frame, advanced to second on a bunt single by Fisher, moved to third on a passed ball and then came around to score along with Fisher when Dwire reached on a Pride miscue to give Elms a 2-1 edge. A sacrifice fly by McGowan evened the game at 2-2 in the top of the fourth before Elms again responded with two runs in the bottom of the fifth when Forrest singled in junior third baseman Sam Farnsworth who reached on a walk. A double-play groundout scored the second run of the inning to give Elms a 4-2 lead.
Springfield crept to within one (4-3) in the top of the sixth and took the lead in the top of the seventh when Ryan Gower singled to center field, stole second, advanced to third on a passed ball and then scored on a single to left by Shane O’Leary. Brent Poulin later ripped a single up the middle to score O’Leary giving the Pride a 5-4 edge.
Three in the home half of the seventh when Dreher singled up the middle, stole second, advanced to third on a wild pitch along with Fisher who got on via a walk, and then scored when Forrest singled through the left side to level the contest at 5-5. Dwire then reached on a fielder’s choice scoring Fisher and moving Forrest to second, before Elms executed a double-steal with Forrest and Dwire to give Elms two runners in the scoring position. A sacrifice fly by freshman second baseman Aedin Wadja sent Forrest the final 90 feet to home and gave the Blazers a 7-5 lead.
After both sides were retired in order in the eighth inning, Corey Wilcox reached on an error to start the ninth and then scored when O’Leary double doe the left field line and advanced to third on the throw home to set the score at 7-6. Poulin then cracked a double to left center to score O’Leary and tie the game at 7-7. Matt Milano then drew a free pass before Frost forced a fly out to end the inning setting the stage for the Blazers’ late-game heroics.
Dreher was 5 for 5 with five singles and three runs scored, while Forrest was 3 for 4 with a pair of RBI and a run scored and two stolen bases. Wadja also had two hits in the game while Fisher scored two runs.
Elms’ freshman starter Kyle Bartlett pitched 4.0 innings and struck out three allowing two runs (one earned) with no hits in a no-decision.
Springfield starting pitcher Dan Green allowed two runs (zero earned) on seven hits in 4.0 innings of work in the no-decision for the Pride. O’Leary and Poulin were each 2 for 5 with two RBI, and O’Leary also scored two runs. McGowan was 2 for 3 with an RBI and a run scored.
The Pride will lace it up again for a non-conference doubleheader on Saturday at Brandeis beginning at 12:00 pm.