Baseball caps 7-4 spring break trip with sweep of Bard
The Hamilton College Continentals closed out their spring trip with a non-conference sweep of the Bard College Raptors in Winter Haven, Fla., on Monday.
Hamilton (7-4 overall) won by scores of 3-2 and 10-6 and posted its best start in 12 years. The seven wins are the most on a spring trip since the 2009 team went 8-6.
Hamilton pounded out 17 hits in the two wins and struck out 14 Raptors. Zack Becker ’16 led the Continentals at the plate with a home run, two singles and four runs scored.
In the opener, the Continentals manufactured the winning run in the top of the seventh. Chris Collins ’17 reached on a fielder’s choice, took second when Brett Mele ’17 was hit by a pitch, stole third and scored when the throw went past the third baseman.
Tommy Moriarty ’14 earned the win by pitching a scoreless seventh, striking out Bard’s last hitter with the tying run on base. Moriarty retired the first two Raptors, then allowed a single up the middle to Gabe Kleiman ’17. Moriarty struck out Bard’s clean-up hitter, inducing three straight swing-and-misses after falling behind 2-0.
After the Raptors took a 1-0 lead in the second, Hamilton tied the score on a third-inning single to center by Ryan Wolfsberg ’17. The Continentals took a lead the next inning when Becker hit a 1-2 pitch over the left field fence with two outs for his first career home run.
Starter Ryan Crawford ’15 struck out a career-high nine batters over 5.2 innings. Crawford allowed two runs and didn’t walk a batter.
In game two, the Continentals jumped out to an 8-1 lead and held on for their seventh win. Joe Jensen ’15 and Kenny Collins ’17 singled in two runs apiece as Hamilton scored a season-high six runs in the second inning.
Both Jensen and Tim Burke ’16 had three of Hamilton’s 11 hits. Jensen also stole his eighth base, raising his career total to 39 and tying the school record held by Sam Choate '12 and John Porges '07. Jensen raised his season average to a team-leading .412 (14-for-34).
Burke and Wolfsberg added run-scoring hits in the second inning. Kenny Collins hit a sacrifice fly in the third and one batter later his brother Chris Collins ’17 brought home a run with an infield groundout that put Hamilton up 8-1. Jacob Lanzkowsky ’16 earned his first collegiate win, allowing two hits over four innings.
The Raptors (3-6) scored five runs during the fifth and sixth innings. Bard closed to within 8-6 and brought the tying run to the plate before the Continentals sealed the win with a pair of sixth-inning runs. Adam Carafotes ’17 singled home a run in the fifth after Kleiman scored on an infield error. In the sixth, Bard capitalized on a pair of Hamilton errors and a bases-loaded walk to Kleiman before reliever Ben Goffin ’15 ended the Raptors threat on a line drive to second base.
In the bottom of the sixth, Becker and Steve LaRochelle ’14 scored on Bard’s fifth error of the game to provide Hamilton with a pair of insurance runs. Moriarty pitched a scoreless seventh, retiring three straight Raptors after a lead-off single as the Continentals won for the fourth time in five games. Becker scored three runs and Brian Ferrell '16 scored twice for Hamilton.
JP Fisher ’17 and Quinn McInerney ’17 both scored a pair of runs for the Raptors.