Baseball Splits Doubleheader Against Amherst, Clinches First Place in NESCAC West

Photo by Lianne Yun '18
Photo by Lianne Yun '18

MIDDLETOWN, Conn. – Junior Will O'Sullivan hit a walk-off single in game one of a doubleheader Saturday to lift the Wesleyan University baseball team to a 4-3 win over Little Three rival and No. 25 Amherst College, but the visitor's responded with an 8-1 victory in game two of the twinbill at Dresser Diamond. 

RECORDS
Wesleyan: 20-10, 7-5 NESCAC West
Amherst: 21-10, 7-5 NESCAC West

GAME TWO

HOW IT HAPPENED

  • O'Sullivan drove home Jordan Farber '16 from second base with two outs in the bottom of the eighth inning, and senior Peter Rantz went the distance on the mound to give the Wesleyan Cardinals a 4-3 victory in game one.
  • Amherst scored all three of its runs in the first inning. The first three batters of the game reached on singles, and Conner Gunn drove in two with a double. Anthony Spina plated the other with a groundout to the shortstop.
  • Wesleyan tied it with three unearned runs in the bottom of the fourth – all with two outs. Matt Jeye '18 walked, Marco Baratta '16 reached on an error by the third baseman, and O'Sullivan drove home one with a single. Nick Miceli '17 followed with a double to tie it.
  • Farber doubled to left with one out in the eighth off Amherst freshman reliever Andrew Ferrero. After Jeye grounded out, Ferrero intentionally walked Baratta. O'Sullivan then laced a 1-1 pitch into right to score the winning run.

BY THE NUMBERS

  • The Cardinal offense came in hitting .352, but managed just four hits off three Amherst pitchers.
  • Rantz picked up his third complete game of the season to improve to 5-3. He threw 110 pitches. He needed just four pitches to retire the side in the fifth inning.
  • Amherst left the bases loaded in the third inning and left nine on in the game.

GAME TWO

HOW IT HAPPENED

  • The game went scoreless for the first three innings until both teams got on the board in the fourth. Spina hit a RBI infield single to bring home Dave Cunningham and advance Gunn to third. Gunn later scored on a sacrifice bunt by Max Steinhorn to put the visitor's up 2-0.
  • Wesleyan cut the deficit to one in the bottom half of the inning off a RBI single by Baratta.
  • The Cardinals, however, were held scoreless the rest of the contest and a five-run fifth inning by Amherst put the game out of reach.
  • The visitor's added another insurance run in the sixth en route to the 8-1 win.

BY THE NUMBERS

  • Wesleyan faced three different pitchers and were held to a mere three hits. Amherst totaled nine against five Cardinal pitchers.
  • Drew Fischer recorded the win for Amherst in 2.2 innings of relief to improve to 2-0, while Ethan Rode '17 started on the mound and was credited with the loss in 4.0 innings of work.
  • Three players recorded singles for Wesleyan – Baratta, Jeye and O'Sullivan. Four different players for Amherst registered two hits, while Spina led all batters with a 2-for-3 performance including two RBI.

BEYOND THE BOX SCORE

  • Wesleyan won the weekend series against Amherst, 2-1, to clinch a berth to the NESCAC Tournament, and claimed first in the NESCAC West.
  • Amherst, Wesleyan and Williams all finished with a 3-3 record in Little Three action.

UP NEXT

  • The Cardinals return to the diamond Tuesday, May 3 for a non-conference matchup against MIT at Briggs Field. First pitch is scheduled for 4 p.m.
  • Amherst also returns to action Tuesday and will face Framingham St. at 7 p.m.