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The Mass Media

Baseball splits midweek homestand

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UMass most recent home game. Photo by Colin Tsuboi (He/Him) / Mass Media Staff. 

The Beacons were staying home for the week, as two opponents came to visit last Tuesday, April 11 and Wednesday, April 12 (1). The Plymouth State University Panthers, a fellow member of the Little East Conference, was the first of the two, looking to win their second road game of the season (2). However, it seemed the Beacons had very different plans.

The game had a rather uneventful start, with not a single run being scored by either team. A wild pitch allowed outfielder Breon Parker and the Beacons to get on the board first, going up 1–0. The entire pace of the game changed in the third inning. Panther infielder Jackson Curtis would take advantage of an error from Beacon pitcher Ross Dexter, tying the game, followed by a Luke Sokolski double, giving the Panthers a 3–1 lead (3).

That lead would not last very long though, as the Beacons clapped back with three runs of their own. Singles from Parker, infielder Aidan Blake and catcher Craig Corliss helped the Beacons regain the lead 4–3. The lead was once again added onto in the fifth inning after a sacrifice fly from Blake allowed third baseman Drew Metzdorf to score (3).

For nearly the entire rest of the game, the Beacons dominated. The sixth inning piled three more runs on after singles from outfielders Mariano Jimenez and Justin Gouveia, and a double from Metzdorf. The seventh saw infielder Bostyn Burris secure his first Runs Batted In of the year, officially giving the Beacons a six-run lead (3).

Blake put the dagger in the win after crushing a home run in the eighth inning to extend the lead to eighthis third of the season. The Panthers would respond with two runs of their own, but by then the game was already out of reach. Eight of the nine Beacon starters recorded a hit in the game, truly an A-class performance from them (3).

Unfortunately, the Beacons could not replicate this performance the next day. The Tufts University Jumbos came to Monan Park to play the Beacons in what was a much lower-scoring outing. The second inning saw the game’s first runs scored with Jumbos’ infielder Jesse McCullough and outfielder Jimmy Evans hitting singles off Beacons’ pitcher Ethan Hunt (4).

The Jumbos went up 3–0 in the fourth inning after outfielder Connor Flavin hit a double. The Beacons would respond with their first run of the game off a Gouveia single, but that would be the last run of the entire match. The Beacons had runners on second and third with one out in the sixth but could not capitalize on the scoring opportunity (4).

The Jumbos’ bullpen was lights out for the rest of the game and managed to secure a 3–1 victory over the Beacons (4). There were opportunities to tie or take the lead, but the Beacons simply couldn’t get it done. It was a tough loss, but one that the Beacons will keep in mind going into their future matches.

The Beacons have had a season of ups and downs thus far, with Wednesday’s loss leaving them with an overall record of 15–9. They are approaching the point of the season where conference matchups become more and more apparent, so it is important that they get prepared for those (1). This team has some excellent players on the roster and is better than their record indicates; if there is a time to catch fire, it should be now.

Next week’s midweek matchups will also be at home. The Beacons will take on UMass Dartmouth and New England College Tuesday, April 18 and Wednesday, April 19. Wednesday’s game has been rescheduled twice now, so it should be a highly anticipated match you will not want to miss (1).

Sources:

1.https://beaconsathletics.com/sports/baseball/schedule

2.https://athletics.plymouth.edu/sports/baseball/schedule

3.https://beaconsathletics.com/news/2023/4/11/blakes-four-rbi-game-lifts-baseball-to-conference-win-over-plymouth-state.aspx

4.https://beaconsathletics.com/news/2023/4/12/baseball-bats-stifled-by-tufts-university-pitching-on-wednesday.aspx

About the Contributor
Liam Crampton, Sports Writer