PREVIEW: Baseball to Host Albertus in GNAC Tournament Single Elimination Round

PREVIEW: Baseball to Host Albertus in GNAC Tournament Single Elimination Round

 

NEWTON, Mass. (5/1/17) -- The third-seeded Lasell College baseball team looks to continue its Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) postseason success from a year ago and extend a current four-game winning streak when it takes on the sixth-seeded Falcons of Albertus Magnus College in Tuesday night's single-elimination, opening round contest at Campanelli Stadium.

The contest will also be held in honor of the four graduating seniors: Matt Haskell, Hector Coscione, Casey Johnson, and Brandon Valentin.

First pitch from Brockton, Mass., is set for 7:00 p.m. For directions, click here.

Lasell played four games over the final two days of the regular season, sweeping GNAC doubleheaders at Norwich and Albertus to finish 14-14 overall. The Lasers won 10 games in conference play for the first time since 2014 after scoring a combined 37 runs on 33 hits in Sunday's 20-7 and 17-5, season-ending victories over the Falcons.

The Lasers are the second-best hitting team in the GNAC with a .315 average. Only St. Joe's ranks higher as its .358 mark is among the nation's top-10.

Junior first baseman Dom Mascolo (Waterbury, Conn.) finished the regular season as one of just two GNAC batters hitting better than .400 as his .431 average ranks second in the league to St. Joe's third baseman Taylor Black. Mascolo's four home runs and 25 RBI trail only senior outfielder Brandon Valentin (Meriden, Conn.) among the Lasers.

Valentin has one more homer and five more RBI than Mascolo this season after setting the program's single-season home run mark with two in Saturday's first win at Norwich, a 9-7 game. Mascolo and Valentin are two of nine Lasell players with 10 or more RBI, while eight regulars are hitting at least .300 entering postseason play.

Two other Lasers achieved career milestones in Sunday's games. Senior shortstop and Newton native Hector Coscione, who also has three saves as a pitcher, set Lasell's single-season record with 35 runs scored. Coscione and graduate right fielder Skylar Beckerman (Pensacola, Fla.) also reached the 100-hit mark for their careers. Beckerman leads the team with 35 hits, while Coscione and Valentin each have 30.

Eight different Lasers have started games on the mound this season. Sophomore Daniel Petr (East Haven, Conn.) leads Lasell in that category with seven and has tossed 23 strikeouts in his 41.1 innings of work, while senior Casey Johnson (Windsor, Conn.) has started six and leads the team with four victories and a 4.78 ERA.

Albertus enters the postseason with a 10-20-1 overall record and 5-9 in conference after losing eight of its last 10 GNAC games. The Falcons hit .255 as a team and have a 7.70 ERA, but senior Andrew Scully (Stratford, Conn.) leads the league with nine home runs.

Saint Joseph's College of Maine and Suffolk are the tournament's top two seeds and earned byes into the double-elimination bracket, which commences on Thursday, May 4. The No. 2 Rams will host the winner of Lasell's contest, while the Monks await the winner of the other Tuesday game between No. 4 Johnson & Wales and No. 5 Norwich.

Following Thursday's games, the tournament shifts to historic Holman Stadium in Nashua, N.H., for the final two rounds, beginning with the semifinals on Saturday, May 6.

Last season's Lasers finished 21-17 and became the first Lasell team to play four rounds into postseason play. The Lasers downed Rivier in the single-elimination round and then fell to eventual champion Suffolk in the first round of double-elimination play before bouncing back against JWU. Lasell's longest-ever GNAC run ended later that Saturday with a 2-0 setback to St. Joe's.