Northboro, MA --- Sophomore Doug Rives (Bethany, CT) struck out a career-high nine batters as WPI defeated Emerson, 7-4, in a NEWMAC baseball divisional crossover game Tuesday at the New England Baseball Complex.
The Engineers, who have won seven of their last eight games, improves to 12-5 overall and 2-1 in the NEWMAC while the Lions move to 8-5 and 1-2.
Rives (4-0) did not allow an earned run on three hits and four walks in the first 6 2/3. Freshman Keith Scales (Upper Marlboro, MD) faced six batters while senior Mike Duclos (Greenfield, MA) struck out two of the eight batters for his second save. Offensively, sophomore Ryan Tropeano (Pembroke, MA) batted 2-for-5 with a triple, a stolen base, an RBI and run scored, and graduate student Anthony Capuano (Stoneham, MA) went 2-for-3 with a walk, a stolen base, and a pair of RBI. Sophomore Steven Gallagher (Coventry, RI) drew a trio of walks, stole a base and scored twice while junior Evan Lacroix (Methuen, MA) also walked three times and crossed home plate once. Senior Nick Comei (Haverhill, MA) walked twice with a pair of stolen bases, an RBI and a run scored. Freshman Tyrone Patterson (Upper Marlboro, MD) and senior Connor Kurtz (Lunenburg, MA) also swiped a base for the Engineers. Gallagher and Capuano were credited with a sacrifice fly and sophomore Austin Lindner (W. Windsor, NJ) notched a sacrifice bunt. Gallagher, Junior Matt Howard (Worcester, MA) and Kurtz spun a 5-4-3 double play.
Senior Mitch Moorman (Hollywood, FL) went 2-for-4 with a triple, a walk and a run at the top of the order, as well as part of a pair of double plays. Classmate Connor Damiano (Randolph, NJ) was also in on two and junior Joey Jacobs (Concord, MA) contributed to one. Senior Clint Fotanella (Pelham, NH) laid down a sacrifice bunt and junior Neil Perry (Middleboro, MA) added a sacrifice fly. Sophomore CJ Rogers (Guilford, CT) stole a base for the guests. Freshman Jack Fox (Los Angeles, CA) allowed three runs – one earned – on six hits and four walks while striking out a pair in the first six innings. Sophomores Tim Mainella (Dover, NH) Jake Mitchell (Monroe, OH) teamed up to finish the game for Emerson.
After Tropeano led off the bottom of the first with his triple, Comei drove him home with a single to left. Jacobs swing the scoreboard in the Lions favor with a two-out 2-RBI single to left in the top of the fourth. WPI pivoted the game back in its favor in the home portion of the stanza as Patterson scampered home on a miscue on Lindner's sac bunt and Lacroix scored on a RBI fielder's choice put into play by Tropeano.
The contest remained 3-2 until the bottom of the seventh when Capuano singled in Gallagher with a hit up the middle. The Engineers posted three more in the eigth beginning with a dropped fly ball on Gallagher's sac fly. Howard found a hole in the right side for an RBI single. Capuano then lifted his sac fly to left.
Emerson made it interesting in the ninth. Moorman began with a triple and quickly scored on Perry's sacrifice fly to right. With the bases juiced, junior Pablo Feldman (Mill Valley, CA) touched home on a failed pickoff to bring the winning run to the dish; however, Duclos struck out the batter to end the game.
The Engineers are slated to host Fitchburg State Thursday for a 3:30pm contest at the NEBC. Emerson entertains Southern Vermont Friday at 3:30pm.
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