Lasers Fall in Home Opener to Leopards
WALTHAM, MA- Lasell College (0-6) suffered a 9-1 loss on Thursday night during their home opener against regional non-conference foes Wentworth Institute of Technology (7-3).
Wentworth’s lefty pitcher Adam Farrar (Newport, VT) earned the victory for the visitors in seven innings, allowing no runs and retiring eight Lasell batters. Reliever Kyle Cruz (Burlington, CT) yielded no hits, striking out one Laser during one frame on the mound and Matt Vezina (Uxbridge, MA) sent away one final batter in the ninth inning.
Leopard first baseman Ben Danker (Branford, CT) went 3-for-5 at the plate, with one double, one run, and two rbi’s. Jake McManus (Hopkinton, NH) and Pete Oggeri (Sandy Hook, CT) each produced two hits on four at-bats. McManus also scored one run and plated one batter, and was perfect on three stolen base attempts. Oggeri rounded the bases three times, launched a triple in the top of the first inning and recorded one stolen base.
Lasell’s Herb Chappell (Salem, CT) and Sean Ruderman (Pittsfield, MA) went 2-4 at bat, including one double each, and added five putouts in the field. Freshman infielder Bobby Statchura (Middletown, CT) yielded one RBI in the ninth on a single to right-center field, plating Jake Salkovitz (Brockton, MA) after a two-base hit left him in scoring position.
The Lasers used an array of pitchers through the nine innings. Starter Matt Pitts (Stoneham, MA) was hit with the loss, giving up three hits and one earned run in three innings on the mound. Mike Rodriguez (Brockton, MA) fanned out two batters in two innings of relief and Joe McKernan (Bourne, MA) allowed no hits and retired one batter in the ninth.
The Leopards struck early in the first inning after Oggeri knocked a triple deep into center field and Danker’s follow-up double down the right field line sent the run home. Lasell’s defense closed out the inning with three fly-outs.
Lasell’s first opportunity to score came in the bottom of the second. Chappell led off with a double into the short center gap, followed by a single shot to left field by Mike Mahoney (Rockland, MA). Angelo Colucci (Stoneham, MA) reached on an error, loading the bases, with two outs. Unfortunately, the Lasers were unable to capitalize, leaving three runners on the bags in following inning-ending ground out.
With no change in score after four innings, the visitors blasted a five-run stretch in the fifth. Conner Flisnik (Marcy, NY) led off with a walk, and advanced to third on a fielders choice and a passed ball. Danker lodged a single up the middle, sending Flisnik home. Mike Diodato (Asbury, NJ) shot a double down the first base line to score Danker, and eventually scored himself on a balk. McManus and Ryan Delgado (Wareham, MA) finished the inning with a pair of unearned runs, bringing the Leopards ahead 6-0.
The Leopards would tally one more run in the sixth after an errant pickoff attempt by Rodriguez with runners on first and third finished Oggeri’s second trip around the bases.
Oggeri would round the bags one final time in the 8th, taking advantage of a wild pitch and Diodato came around the bases after McManus launched a one-run double to right center, giving Wentworth a decided nine-run advantage.
Lasell would score their sole run in the bottom of the ninth. Salkovitz pinch hit for Colucci, powering a two-bag shot to center field to get into scoring position. Statchura’s single advanced Salkovitz to allow the run.
Lasell begins Great Northeast Athletic Conference play on Saturday, March 27th, in a double-header against Norwich University. The first pitch is scheduled to be thrown at noon, on the Lasers’ home field at Brandeis University.