Winter Haven, FL --- Sophomores Matt Blakeman (Bedford, NH) and Tim Erlandson (Hudson, MA) led the Engineers with three hits on the day and junior Shane Sampson (Worcester, MA) tossed a three hitter in the nightcap as WPI swept Colby-Sawyer 5-4 and 8-1 in a pair of games at the RussMatt Central Florida Invitational on Friday.
In the eye-opener, WPI (5-2) erased a two-run deficit in the fourth inning on back-to-back RBI doubles by junior Brendan Walsh (Windham, NH) and sophomore David Trujillo (Sutton, MA) to bring the score even at 2-2.
Colby–Sawyer (6-3) regained the lead with an unearned run in the top of the sixth inning. The Engineers responded with three unearned runs in the bottom of the frame as Trujillo, senior Nick Bean (Middleboro, MA) and senior Kyle Bartosik (Midland Park, NJ) each crossed home plate following a pair of Charger miscues and a hit by freshman Steve Petry (Worcester, MA).
In the bottom of the seventh, Colby-Sawyer utilized a bunt and sacrifice fly to manufacture a tally to pull within one before a ground out ended the game.
Senior Sean Minor (Sherman Oaks, CA) improved to 1-1 as he tossed a complete game surrendering four runs – two earned – on 10 hits and struck out seven Chargers.
In the nightcap, the Engineers capitalized on a fielding miscue with two outs and jumped out to a 3-0 lead. With a pair of runners in scoring position, Bean connected on a 2-RBI double to right field and later scored on a double to center by Petry.
The game would not see another run until Colby-Sawyer (6-4) broke up the shutout on an RBI groundout in the bottom of the fourth.
WPI (6-2) then tacked on three more tallies in the top of the fifth. Erlandson brought home a run on a triple to right field. Senior John Flynn (Albion, ME) then cleared the bases with a two-run shot to right field. The Engineers increased the lead to 8-1 in the sixth on a fielder's choice and a Charger miscue and later on a sacrifice fly off the bat of Trujillo.
Sampson scattered three hits over six innings while fanning five batters as he improved to 2-0. Freshman Taylor Landry (Kennebunk, ME) tossed one inning of relief for the Engineers.
Flynn, Trujillo, Bartosik and Petry each connected twice in the two-game set to join Blakeman and Erlandson with multiple hits for the Engineers.
WPI will face Westfield State tomorrow for a doubleheader beginning at 10:30am. Colby-Sawyer concludes its stay in Florida and will venture to UMass Dartmouth on Saturday, March 24 for a noon twin bill.
Story written by Mark Therrien