NORTHBOROUGH, Mass. – Lesley University freshman Ryan Pumphret (Shrewsbury, Mass.) blasted a leadoff home run in extra innings to give Lesley a walk-off 4-3 win over Elms College in game one of a New England Collegiate Conference doubleheader tonight at the New England Baseball Complex. The Blazers would salvage the split in game two with a 5-0 victory. The rubber match of the series will be played next Tuesday, April 12th in Chicopee, Mass.
The Lynx will return to the diamond on Saturday and play host to New England College in a non-conference twin-billing starting at 5:00p. The Blazers will continue NECC action on Saturday and host Newbury College at 1:00p.
Game One: Elms 3, Lesley 4 (Final – 8 Innings)
Pumphret delivered a leadoff home run to centerfield in the bottom of the eighth to power the Lynx to a 4-3 walk-off victory. The home run was the first of Pumphret's career.
The blast came on the heels of Lynx starter Tom Muratore (Mamaroneck, N.Y.) getting out of a bases-loaded jam in the top of the inning. After a hit batsmen and a pair of walks – one intentional – loaded the bases with one out for the Blazers, Muratore got some help from his defense with a 4-6-3 double play to escape the jam unscathed.
Muratore earned his third win of the season with a complete game effort. He allowed just three hits – two home runs – three runs, and three strike outs while working around five walks.
The Blazers struck first in the top of the first inning as junior Steve Harrison (Southbury, Conn.) blasted a two-run shot over the wall in left to give the guests an early 2-0 lead.
The Lynx would respond and cut the deficit in half in the bottom of the inning. Freshman Matthew Bavaro (Sayville, N.Y.) smacked a one-out double down the right field line before later scoring on an RBI single off the bat of freshman Jacob Cervantes (Oxnard, Calif.).
Cervantes was involved in igniting a Lesley rally in the bottom of the fourth as he reached on an error in the Elms infield before swiping second to get himself into scoring position. His steal proved to be crucial as he came around and slid home safely on a single to centerfield by junior J.P. Agiorgousis (Hanscom, Mass.). After a single from Nicholas Ferragine (Randolph, N.J.) on a perfectly executed hit-and-run play put Lynx runners on the corners, Agiorgousis would score on a fielder's choice by senior Casey Blanchard (Bernardston, Mass.) to give Lesley a 3-2 lead.
The score would remain the same until the top of the sixth inning when junior Jordan Zima (Berlin, Conn.) led off the inning with a line drive home run over the left field fence to even the score at 3-3.
That would be all the Blazers would get before Pumphret's blast captured the win for the Lynx.
Pumphret, Cervantes, and Agiorgousis all finished with one hit, one run scored, and one RBI while senior Gustavo Polidor (Caracas, Venezuela) went 2-for-4 from atop the Lynx lineup.
Game Two: Elms, Lesley
Elms starter Tom Weldon (Springfield, Mass.) improved to 7-0 on the season in a complete game shutout effort. Weldon racked up eighth strikeouts while scattering four hits to earn the split for the guests.
The Blazers would strike first once again in the top of the first as freshman Alex Hoss (Stafford Springs, Conn.) led off with a walk, was sacrificed over to second, and then scored on an RBI single up the middle from Harrison.
The Elms offense keep the momentum in the top of the second and pushed two more runs across the plate. After a pair of singles and a walk loaded the bases with no outs, a single to left by junior Brian Hungerford (New Preston, Conn.) scored sophomore Andy Vazquez (Queens, N.Y.) and junior Tim Gelzinis(North Dighton, Mass.) to extend the advantage to 3-0.
The Blazers would add a pair of insurance runs in the sixth and hold on for the 5-0 victory.
Harrison and Gelzinis both finished 2-for-3 to lead the Elms offense while junior Mike Slaby (Foxboro, Mass.) picked a pair of hits to power the hosts.