VERO BEACH, Fla. – The Bridgewater State University baseball team dropped a pair of games to Eastern Nazarene College on Monday in Vero Beach, Florida.
The Bears fall to 2-4 on the season with the two setbacks, while the Lions extend their season-opening winning streak to five games.
Bridgewater jumped out to a 1-0 lead with a run in the top of the first. Senior second baseman Tyler Morini (Plymouth, Mass.) pushed a single through the left side and advanced to third following back-to-back ground outs. Senior third baseman Randy Frazier (Wareham, Mass.) then plated Morini with an RBI single between short and third.
Eastern Nazarene tied the game up in the bottom of the first on a sacrifice fly off the bat of sophomore DH Devin Haberstumpf (Forest Hills, N.Y.).
The game remained tied at 1-1 until the bottom of the third when the Lions took advantage of four walks in the frame to score two runs and take the 3-1 lead. A Steven Pesce (Harrison, N.Y.) single accounted for the only hit of the inning for ENC. Junior centerfielder Connor Simpson (Haverhill, Mass.) and junior left fielder Anthony Esposito (Mount Royal, N.J.) both walked to start the inning and both would eventually score.
Junior right-hander Ben Peterson (Manchester, Conn.) worked the first five innings out on the hill for Eastern Nazarene to pick up the win. Peterson (1-0) allowed a run on three hits with three walks and three strikeouts. Haberstumpf tossed a scoreless seventh to record the save.
Junior lefty Greg Cavaioli (Leominster, Mass.) went the distance on the mound for Bridgewater State in the setback. Cavaioli gave up three runs on six hits over six innings of work. He walked six and fanned one.
Frazier went 2-for-3 with the RBI to pace the BSU offense, while Morini was 1-for-3 at the plate with a walk and the Bears' only run. Senior right fielder Ryan Kelleher (Danvers, Mass.) singled and walked in three trips to the plate.
Esposito went 2-for-3 with a walk and a run for the Crusader, while Simpson walked three times and score a pair of runs in four plate appearances. Sophomore right fielder Dylan Louviaux (Mohnton, Pa.) was a perfect 2-for-2 with a walk and an RBI.
In game two, Bridgewater rallied from a 4-0 deficit to score two runs in the sixth and one in the seventh to cut the deficit to 4-3. The Bears had the tying run 90 feet away with two outs, but were unable to get the clutch hit.
An infield single by Simpson with the bases loaded and two outs in the top of the second inning staked Eastern Nazarene to the early 1-0 lead.
The Lions pushed across three runs in the top of the sixth to extend the advantage to 4-0. Sophomore right fielder Joshua Bombard (Rutland, Mass.) drove in the first run of the frame on a sacrifice fly, while junior second baseman Josue Basilis (Bronx, N.Y.) and Simpson followed with back-to-back RBI doubles.
In the home half of the sixth, Frazier walked with one out and advanced to third on successive wild pitches. Senior left fielder Alex Carey (East Bridgewater, Mass.) reached on an infield single to plate Frazier with the Bears' first run of the game and moved to second on throwing error. After a pitching change, sophomore centerfielder Lewis Robinson (New Britain, Conn.) followed with a base hit off the closer Haberstumpf sending Carey to third. Carey then raced home on a wild pitch to make it a 3-2 game.
Kelleher led off the bottom of the seventh with a double and, one out later, came around to score on sophomore first baseman Sean Casey's (Braintree, Mass.) RBI single. Casey moved up to second on a balk and, following an out, advanced to third on a wild pitch. Haberstumpf, however, induced a game-ending ground out to thwart the Bears' comeback bid.
Sophomore left-hander Brenndan Rogers (Hanson, Mass.) picked up the win on the mound for Eastern Nazarene. Rogers (1-0) allowed two runs (one earned) on two hits and five walks with a pair of strikeouts. Haberstumpf gave up a run on three hits with one strikeout in 1 2/3 innings of relief to record his second save of the afternoon.
Junior righty Colin Josselyn (Hanson, Mass.) suffered the loss for Bridgewater State. Josselyn (0-1) gave up four runs on ten hits in 5 2/3 innings of work with a walk and a strikeout. He also hit a batter. Freshman right-hander Matt Josselyn (Hanson, Mass.) pitched well in relief as he retired four of the five batters he faced.
Simpson was on base three more times in game two as he went 3-for-4 with a double and two RBI. Zachary Carmody singled three times in four at bats and also scored a pair of runs, while Bombard was 2-for-2 at the plate with a double and the sacrifice fly.
Carey was the only Bear with multiple hits as he went 2-for-3 with a run and an RBI. Robinson finished 1-for-2 with a walk, while Frazier and junior DH Gavin Sparkman (Beverly, Mass.) each walked twice.
Bridgewater State's spring break trip to Vero Beach continues on Wednesday as the Bears take on Kenyon College at 11:00 AM.