Coast Guard 8, WPI 6 - NEWMAC Tournament - Day #3
Norton, MA --- Fifth-seeded Coast Guard rallied from a 6-1 deficit to defeat third-seeded WPI in game nine of the 2010 NEWMAC Tournament on Saturday afternoon. The Bears (12-17) advance to Sunday's championship round where they must beat top seed and host Wheaton twice to claim the crown. WPI (21-10) is eliminated from the tournament and will complete its season Tuesday at Elms.
Freshman Tyler Vieira (Dumfries, VA) earned the
win in relief for the Bears, tossing 3.2 shutout innings of one-hit
ball. Classmate Nolan Gallagher (New Milford, CT) went
3-for-4, freshman Mike Massaro (Sewell, NJ) posted
two hits, two runs and three RBI, and classmate Eric
Gerken (Tampa, FL) had two hits and a pair of RBI.
Freshman Riley Beecher (Elgin, TX) doubled twice,
and senior John Jeffares (Saint Petersburg, FL) added
a pair of knocks.
Sophomore Mitch McClune (Pembroke, MA) went 3-for-4 for the Engineers, who stranded 13 runners. Senior Mike Swanton (Foxboro, MA) added two hits, while freshman Shane Sampson (Worcester, MA) took the loss in relief, allowing four runs on eight hits in 3.2 frames.
WPI broke out of a 1-1 tie the home half of the third inning, plating five runs on three hits and two errors after the first two batters had been retired, but Coast Guard chipped away with two runs the next inning. Milligan's solo home run highlighted the fourth, and Massaro and Gerken roped back-to-back RBI doubles in the sixth to make it 6-5.
With WPI threatening to widen its lead in the home half, Vieira entered the game with a two-on, one-out situation and promptly struck out the first two batters he faced.
The Bears completed their comeback in the eighth, as Gerken's triple to the right field gap plated Massaro, and Milligan lofted a tie-breaking sac fly to make it 7-6. The Engineers again looked to score in the bottom half, placing runners at the corners with no one out, but Jeffares fielded a grounder at first base to start an unconventional 3-2 double play before Vieira induced an inning-ending grounder.
Massaro added a sac fly in the ninth to give Coast Guard breathing room before Mark Dignum (Albany, MA), WPI's leadoff batter in the ninth inning, walked. However, the runner never made it as far as second base, as Vieira set down the final three Engineers, each of whom represented the tying run.
Release Courtesy Wheaton Athletics