UMass Boston's independent, student-run newspaper

The Mass Media

The Mass Media

The Mass Media

Baseball blows by opponents in pursuit of LEC Championship

Dillon Ryan pitching at Monan Park. Photo by Dong Woo Im /Mass Media Staff.
Dillon Ryan pitching at Monan Park. Photo by Dong Woo Im /Mass Media Staff.

Prior to a postponed meeting with Western New England University Thursday, April 18, the Beacons were winners of five of their previous six matches. To do you one better, extending their schedule—which can be found on Beacons Athletics—as far back as March 20, the Beacons came out victorious in 13 of 15 games during that stretch [1].

Amassing a 19–9 record going into their would-be game against the Golden Bears, the Beacons sported a 3–1 record over their previous seven days. Those three wins came by way of a doubleheader sweep against Keene, State Saturday, April 13, and a blowout victory over Worcester State University, Wednesday, April 17 [1].

Against Keene State College, the Beacons were buzzing, and the Owls couldn’t keep up. Max Moss tossed six strong innings, allowing two earned runs with four strikeouts and a walk. Three runs in the third inning for UMass Boston put them on the board first, making it 3–0. According to Beacons Athletics, Justin Gouveia got the scoring started with an Runs Batted In double, followed by an RBI single from Aidan Blake and a second RBI double from Brandon Gaer [2].

Two more runs crossed in the fourth inning, but the Owls fought back with a run of their own in the fourth, before closing the gap with another three in the fifth. Up 5–4, the Beacons widened their lead in the bottom half of the frame and poured it on in the later innings. Their lone run in the fifth was the start of a 6–0 run by them, one that included a four-run seventh inning.

The Beacons’ bullpen shut down Keene State in the final three innings, allowing just one baserunner via an Owls’ double in the eighth. A groundout to shortstop Elliot Miles capped an impressive 11–4 win for UMass Boston, who lit up the Owls’ pitching staff with 14 hits.

The second half of the double header was a near carbon copy of game one. Beacons Athletics presented that, this time around, the Beacons scored ten runs on 14 hits in a 10–4 victory. The Owls jumped out to a 1–0 lead in the opening frame by way of a bases loaded hit by pitch, but UMass Boston quickly responded. Blake brought home the first UMass Boston runs with a two-RBI triple in the bottom of the first. Mike Meagher brought in a third run to make it 3–1 after one.

Meagher got a second RBI in the fourth after a sac fly, giving UMass Boston a 4–2 lead. Quality pitching from starter Dillon Ryan and the Beacons’ bullpen—who once again shut out the Owls’ offense—was all the Beacons needed to keep the game in hand. They scored four unanswered runs in the final four innings to pull away and sweep the series.

Following their outstanding offensive showcase against the Owls, the Beacons ended up dropping a game to Plymouth State University on the road. It was a promising game initially, as according to Beacons Athletics, a three-run home run from Gaer in the first gave them a quick 3–0 lead. However, starting pitcher Ethan Hunt wasn’t as electric compared to his previous outings. He got shelled for his first loss of the year, allowing ten runs in less than four innings of work. The Panthers pounced from the get go, scoring seven in the first inning alone, and the Beacons had to play catch-up very early on [4].

A Mariano Jimenez homer in the fourth cut the lead to 8–6, but three homers by the Panthers in the bottom half made it a five-run game. The Beacons battled back to an 11–9 deficit in the sixth, but two more runs by Plymouth State sealed the deal on a 13–9 loss. Despite the loss, the bats were still on fire, as the team accumulated 18 hits off the Panthers, and their bats would stay hot in their following game against Worcester State.

The game against the Lancers saw the Beacons let loose early, scoring eight runs in four innings. According to Beacons Athletics, three of those runs came from the swing of Josh Garner with a bases-clearing double in the third, and the Beacons were in business with an 8–0 advantage. The Lancers scored in the fifth to make it 8–1, but the Beacons responded in the bottom half, hanging a six-spot on Worcester State for a 14–1 lead, seemingly securing the game. The Lancers put up four in the eighth, but at that point the game was out of reach, and the Beacons won 15–5.

The Beacons are clicking, and it’s important they maintain this pace and not fall into a slump this late into the year. However, it’s hard to believe the wheels could fall off given their season-long stretch of dominance. If anything, their firepower may only grow, and the shelves will have to make room for another Little East Conference trophy.

  1. https://beaconsathletics.com/sports/baseball/schedule
  2. https://beaconsathletics.com/sports/baseball/stats/2024/keene-state/boxscore/11691
  3. https://beaconsathletics.com/sports/baseball/stats/2024/keene-state/boxscore/11773
  4. https://beaconsathletics.com/sports/baseball/stats/2024/plymouth-state-university/boxscore/11692
  5. https://beaconsathletics.com/sports/baseball/stats/2024/worcester-state-university/boxscore/11693
About the Contributor
Nick Collins, Sports Editor