Northboro, MA --- Alex Smith (Wethersfield, CT) drove in the winning run and finished a triple short of the cycle and Matt Amore (Pequannock, NJ) tossed five shutout innings of relief as Gordon defeated host WPI 7-6 in a non-conference baseball contest played Thursday afternoon at the New England Baseball Complex.
The Fighting Scots, who were making their 2016 New England debut, improve to 6-5 while WPI (7-6) saw its five-game winning streak snapped.
After an opening four innings that saw both teams score six runs, Amore (2-0) came out of the bullpen and scattered two hits while walking four and registering eight strikeouts. Smith put the guests ahead for good at 7-6 in the top of the sixth inning when he belted a two-out ground-rule double to chase home Addison Tarr (Oxnard, CA). Amore worked out of jams in the sixth and eighth innings, registering key strikeouts to end both threats. The lefty then fanned the side to close out the game in the ninth.
Gordon jumped out to a 6-2 advantage after an inning and half with Smith getting the Fighting Scots on the board in the first with a long homer to center and then adding a run-scoring single in the second to go along with a Tarr sacrifice fly, a Jeremy Jackson (Waco, TX) RBI single and a double steal in which he scored.
The Engineers dented the scoring column in each of the first four frames. The hosts broke through with a John Mulready (Rockland, MA) RBI single in the bottom of the first followed by DJ Ouellette's (Watertown, MA) first home run of the season an inning later. In the third, Nick Comei (Haverhill, MA) scored on a wild pitch before Ouellette knocked home two on a single to center field. WPI leveled the game at 6-6 in the fourth on a Comei sacrifice fly that plated Evan Lacroix (Methuen, MA).
Smith was 4-for-5 from the plate with the homer, a pair of doubles, three RBIs and two runs scored. Christian Hodge (Waltham, MA) and Ryan Paulsen (Latham, NY) both had three base knocks as Gordon out-hit the Engineers 17 to 9. Comei, Ouellette and Lacroix all had two hits for the Crimson and Gray.
Sam Bacchaocchi (Freetown, MA) (0-2) shouldered the loss for WPI, allowing a run in 2 1/3 innings. Dan Bettigole (South Windsor, CT) fanned seven in 3 1/3 scoreless innings of relief while Drew Gelinas (Saco, ME) did not allow a run in the final 1 2/3 innings. Scott Hall (Weymouth, MA) worked the first four innings for Gordon.
WPI returns to the New England Baseball Complex for a noon doubleheader with Worcester State on Saturday. Gordon is off until Tuesday when it host Lesley at 3:30pm in its home opener.