When and Where: May 12, 2017 – West Haven, Conn. (Frank Vieira Field)
Score: Franklin Pierce University 6, Southern New Hampshire University 4
Records: Franklin Pierce 33-13, SNHU 41-8
Junior Caleb Potter (Mentor, Ohio) highlighted a three-run fifth with a two-run single that tied the game, but the fifth-ranked Southern New Hampshire University baseball team saw its 16-game winning streak come to end with a 6-4 loss to Franklin Pierce University in the winner's bracket semifinal of the Northeast-10 Championship on Friday at the University of New Haven's Frank Vieira Field.
SNHU, the top seed in the Northeast Division, will now immediately take on New Haven, the Southwest Division's No. 2 seed, in an elimination game at approximately 5:25 p.m. The winner will take on Franklin Pierce, the Northeast's No. 2 seed, on Saturday in the championship round, needing to beat the Ravens twice for the title.
Franklin Pierce jumped on the board first with three runs in the third. The Ravens alternated singles and outs to load the bases with two down before Harrison Smoske lined a two-run single to right-center. Lucas Luopa followed by looping a single down the left field line to make it 3-0 and end the day of senior starter Alex Person (Foxboro, Mass.). Freshman Nick Artymowicz (Seaville, N.J.) came on in relief and ended the inning with a strikeout.
Southern New Hampshire struck back with three in the bottom of the fifth. Senior Cam Oliveira (Tewksbury, Mass.) was plunked leading off the frame before sophomore Kyle Ruth (Albany, N.Y.) laced a single to center and graduate student Zach Goldstein (Merrick, N.Y.) walked to load the bases with no outs. Franklin Pierce made a pair of pitching changes and nearly made it out of the inning unscathed, but redshirt-junior Ryan Sullivan (Hopkinton, Mass.) grounded one into the hole and the shortstop could not handle it, scoring Oliveira with SNHU's first run. Potter followed by dumping a ball down the line in shallow right to plate a pair and knot the game, 3-3.
Franklin Pierce went ahead, 4-3, in the top of the seventh on a one-out wild pitch with the bases loaded and then added an insurance run on Luopa's sac fly in the eighth.
SNHU threatened in the home half of the eighth as redshirt-sophomore John Stanton (Sandwich, Mass.) led off by reaching on an error by the third baseman before junior Kyle Pangallo (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.) was hit by a pitch to put a pair on with no outs. Franklin Pierce went to the bullpen for Miles Sheehan, who struck out back-to-back batters and induced a pop out to get out of the jam.
The Ravens tacked on another with a double steal in the ninth to extend the lead to 6-3.
In the ninth, Ruth and senior Derek Bauer (Millis, Mass.) led off with consecutive singles to put two on with no one out. Following a foul out to the catcher and a strikeout, Stanton lined a single to left field to trim the deficit to 6-4 and bring the potential winning run to the plate. Franklin Pierce would induce a grounder to short to end the game.
Stanton went 2-for-3 with a walk, HBP and an RBI, with Blandini going 2-for-5 with a run scored. Ruth (run) and Bauer (walk) each finished 1-for-4, while Potter was 1-for-5 with a pair of RBI. Goldstein was 0-for-2, but scored a run and was on base three times.
Person allowed three runs on six hits, while striking out four and walking a pair, in three-and-two-thirds. Artymowicz (2-2) was the tough-luck loser, being charged with one run on a hit and a walk, as he struck out four over two-and-two-thirds. Junior Ivon Clough (Dublin, N.H.) walked the only two batters he faced, with redshirt-freshman Brendan Welch (Easton, Mass.) giving up two runs – one earned – on two hits, striking out two and walking two, in two innings. Junior Joe DeSarro (Frankfort, N.Y.) struck out one as he retired both hitters he saw.
- The loss snaps SNHU's second longest winning streak in program history at 16 games.
- After sweeping Franklin Pierce in the three-game regular-season set for the first time in school history, Southern New Hampshire suffers its first loss of the year against the Ravens.
- The Penmen, who squeaked out a 1-0 win against New Haven in Thursday's opener, are 2-1 this season versus the Chargers.
The Penmen return to action Friday, May 12 (5:25 p.m.) when they take on New Haven in an elimination game
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