Double Sorrow For Baseball


UMass Boston Beacons at the plate. Photo courtesy of UMass Athletics.

Jason Campos

It was bewildering Saturday for the UMass Boston baseball team. Although the Beacons have not had much success in Little East Conference play, the team has had a moderately successful season overall. The opponent for last Saturday’s doubleheader was LEC foe the Anchormen of Rhode Island College, who came into the game with no conference wins and a record of 7-23 overall. However, by early evening, disappointment hung on every Beacon player face after the team dropped both games.

Anchorman Jeremy Edwards pitched seven solid innings for his first win of the season, giving up one run on hits, and Rhode Island batters pounded out 16 hits as UMass Boston lost in the first game, 11-1. The Beacons fell behind early as the teams’ bats went cold.

The Anchormen jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the first inning on back-to-back home runs by first baseman Eric Gibree and right fielder Russ Barron. UMB’s starting pitcher, Seith Bedard retired the first two batters before surrendering a double catcher Dave Quaglia. Gibree came to the plate and deposited a Bedard pitch over the left field fence. Barron followed suit with his own round tripper.

Rhode Island College continued to build on their lead with two runs in the second inning and one run in the third inning. UMB did not get on to the scoreboard until the fourth inning. With one out, Adam Waxman singled to center field. After Edwards had struck out catcher Rob Young, he tried to pick off Waxman. The throw was a bad one and it got by Gibree, allowing Waxman to advance to second. The batter at the plate, Johnny Ingalls, proceeded to smash a double to left, scoring Waxman for the Beacons’ only run of the game.

The Beacons had only one more moderate threat to get some runs on the board in the fifth inning when Michael Chirichiello and Jim McDonough reached base with one out. But Beacon second baseman Matt Thayer grounded to third base, forcing Chirichiello at third and Matt Thomas struck out to end the inning.

The Anchormen scored runs in the seventh, eighth, and ninth innings for the games final runs. Beacon pitcher Anthony Forbes relieved Bedard with one out in the eighth inning and Matthew Ahl finished of the game when he came in with one out in the ninth.

The Beacons displayed more offense on the back end of the doubleheader, but the team again fell behind early as Rhode Island College won 10-8. The Anchormen scored eight of the game’s first nine runs, forcing the Beacons to play catch up once more.

Glenn Dusablon led off the game and Quaglia followed his example two batters later for the game’s initial runs. UMB cut the lead in half in the bottom half of the inning. With the bases loaded, shortstop Karl Gardner was hit by a pitch, forcing home a run.

Rhode Island College scored twice in the third inning, once in the fourth inning, and two more times in the fifth inning to build a 8-1 lead, as the team looked to run away as they did in the first game.

However, UMB chipped the lead to 8-4 in the bottom of the fifth. Matt Maguire reached on an infield hit and Ingalls got on base when his grounder was bobbled by shortstop Michael Luke, one of six errors for the Anchormen in the game. After Thayer went down looking on strikes, Thomas reached on fielder’s choice, forcing Ingalls at second base.

Waxman was up next and he sent a fastball from Anchorman pitcher Matthew Brannon deep to left field It appeared to be a home run, but the second base umpire ruled that the ball had hopped over the fence for a ground rule double. Beacon coach Mark Bettencourt argued, but to no avail. So, Maguire scored and Waxman ended up on second base and Thomas on third base.

Matt Tapley was the next batter and he smashed a rocket by the third baseman for a single, scoring Thomas and Waxman. Karl Gardner struck out to end the inning.

Rhode Island College scored two runs in the top of the seven on two run homer by Melucci. The Beacons brought three more batters across the plate in the bottom half of the inning. Thayer and Thomas reached on a single and error, respectively. Waxman then hit a grounder to the right side. Second baseman Melucci botched the play, allowing Waxman to reach and Thayer to score. After Tapley struck out, Gardner singled home Thomas. Right fielder Eddie Stish hit what appeared to be a 4-6-3 inning ending double play, but Luke held onto the ball, allowing Waxman to score the inning’s third run.

The Beacons scored one run in the bottom of the ninth and had the tying runs on base, but failed to bring them home. With two outs and pinch runner Jim McDonough on second base, Chirichiello hit shot to second baseman Pacitto, which the infielder misplayed, allowing the ball to go through his legs and McDonough come to the plate to score. Young also reached base on an error. However, the threat ended when Ingalls flew out to left field.

Beacon starter John Forbes pitched four plus innings, allowing eight runs on nine hits. Jeff Mogan pitched well, permitting only two runs on five hits over five innings. Thayer paced the team with three hits.

The Beacons’ record fell to 17-15 overall and 1-10 in the Little East Conference. Sunday’s game against LEC rival Southern Maine was rained out due to inclement weather.