Since coming back from Easter break we have played many games and like all season, there has been many ups and downs along the way. We have played UMass Lowell, Saint Michael’s, Assumption, American International College, and Saint Anselm since my last post.
On April 11th, we traveled to UMass Lowell to play the River Hawks under the lights after coming off a big victory over them the last time we played them. They threw the same starting pitcher that we beat back on April 3rd so we knew he was going to give everything he had to get back at us. This was a very big game because if we beat them we would win the series and own the tie breaker heading into the playoffs if it came down to it, so we were all fired up and ready to go. Playing at LaLacheur Park (the Lowell Spinners home field) also helps out because it is the nicest field in the league. Travis Terrill started for us, but did not have his best stuff which allowed them to jump ahead 5-0 after 3 innings. We were able to battle back and make it 5-2 after Casey Cotter and Joe Mantoni were able to drive in a pair of runs, but Lowell pulled away and ended up winning the game, 7-2. This was only game 2 of the 3 game series so we still had another chance to win the series against a very good UMass Lowell team the next week.
Before we played UMass Lowell again we headed up to Vermont for the weekend to take on Saint Michael’s College. The weather was perfect the whole weekend and we were going to give everything we had to try and grab 3 games from them. Mike Laracy was on the hill for game 1 of the double header on Saturday, April 14th. Mike, just like Travis, did not have his usual stuff that day. He tossed 3 innings while surrendering 3 runs. We were unable to bounce back from the 3-0 deficit and wound up dropping game 1 of the 3 game series 5-1. We knew we had to take the next 2 games and win the series if we were going to keep fighting to make the playoffs.
We started off slow again this next game being down 1-0 heading into the top of the 7th inning after Joe Carnevale continued is great season allowing 1 run over 6 innings. Our offense came together after calling it up for a team meeting and the whole team came alive. We put up 4 runs in the 7th inning and another 4 in the 8th to take a 8-2 lead and we were able to hold onto the lead and secure the victory to earn Joe Carnevale his 3rd win of the season.
Game 3 took place on Sunday and we had Joe Mantoni on the hill. We knew Joe was going to give us everything he had and he did that on this very warm humid day. Joe only went 4 innings before being pulled because being so tired and dehydrated from the heat and working so hard. He only gave up a pair of runs in those 4 innings while striking out four batters. Brett Julian came in and threw 3 innings without surrendering an earned run. Our offense continued to stay hot following the last couple innings of game 2 and were able to put up another 8 runs for us. Alan Pastyrnak and Tim Curran led the way for the offense. Alan racked up four hits, while Tim collected four RBI on the day. We were able to win the game 8-5 and take the series winning 2 out of 3 games.
Our next game took place on April 17th and it was the 3rd and final game of the series against UMass Lowell. This turned out to be one of the most exciting games of the season, and one of the most exciting games I have ever been a part of. Travis Terrill was on the mound again and this time he was out for revenge after taking the loss against them the week before. We took the early leading being up 5-1 heading into the top of the 5th inning, and then the game became a little more interesting. Lowell put up 4 runs in the inning to tie up the game, but we bounced right back and put another 2 runs on the board.
After being up 7-5 Lowell was able to grab a run in the 6th and 7th inning to tie it up once again. Once again we were able to grab another run and take the lead heading into the 9th. Lowell then hit a home run to tie the game up in the 9th and we ended up going to extra innings. Casey Cotter got a one out hit in the bottom of the 10th inning before Joe Mantoni stepped to the plate. Joe worked the count to 3-0 and coach gave him the green light to swing away if he got the pitch he wanted. Joe got the pitch he wanted and hit a towering home run over the left center field fence for a walk off two run home run and win the series for us. This was one of the most exciting moments in my baseball career and I was just watching it. This is a game I will remember the rest of my life.
After the exciting victory over UMass Lowell we then had two non-conference games against Assumption and American International College. We unfortunately dropped both games, but luckily it doesn’t go against us making the playoffs.
We then were set to play Saint Anselm in a 3 game series at home April 21st and 22nd but were only able to play 2 of the 3 due to rain on Sunday. This was a very big series and we came out fired up because it was Spring Weekend at Merrimack College. We had Joe Carnevale on the hill for game 1 and Mike Laracy on the hill for game 2. Joe went out and pitched a great game hurling 5 innings and surrendering 4 runs and left with a lead.
Joe Mantoni stayed hot and blasted 2 home runs in game 1 and helped give us a chance to win the 1st game of the double header. We were up 6-5 going into the top of the 9th inning and we had our most reliable pitcher on the year on the hill, Alek Morency. Unfortunately Alek made one bad pitch and it was hit for a home run to tie the game. The game went 11 innings before Saint Anselm was able to put up 2 runs and we couldn’t bounce back, we dropped game one 8-6. Game 2 was close and very exciting until the end of the game. Mike Laracy tossed 6 innings and only surrendered 3 runs giving us a chance to win the game, but unfortunately we couldn’t get the job done and we down 4-3 heading into the top of the 9th inning before giving up 6 runs and dropping the game 10-3.
We travel to Bentley on April 25th, before senior day against Assumption April 26th, and playing our make-up game against Saint Anselm at home on Friday. We will then travel to New Hampshire for the weekend to take on Franklin Pierce before heading into the final week of the regular season.