FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – Southern New Hampshire University split a pair of baseball games Thursday at Santaluces Sports Complex. The Penmen (8-6) defeated American International College 5-4 in a non-conference contest before falling to Dowling College 1-0.
Against the Yellow Jackets, freshman Junior Mendez (Patchogue, N.Y.) earned his first collegiate victory, working eight innings and allowing eight hits and four runs, all earned. He struck out eight while walking one. Ryan Walfield (Stratford, N.H.) struck out the side in the ninth for the save. All nine Penmen in the lineup finished with one hit as SNHU outhit AIC 9-8.
AIC jumped out to a 4-1 lead following two runs in the top of the fifth, but the Penmen would score four times in the bottom of the frame. Jon Massad (Shrewsbury, Mass.) delivered a two-run double that plated Chris O'Neil (Chelmsford, Mass.) and Kevin Spatkowski (Bristol, Conn.). Massad would score on a sacrifice fly by Jamie Wollerman (Hasbrouck Heights, N.J.). Juan Amador (Derry, N.H.), who doubled after Massad, scored on a single by Tim Rines (Merrimack, N.H.).
The Yellow Jackets scored twice in the fourth to take a 2-0 lead, but the Penmen would get one back in the bottom of the frame. Wollerman led off the inning with a double and scored on a single by Robert Wronski (Arlington, Mass.).
Against Dowling, Southern New Hampshire could muster just a pair of hits off Golden Lion starter JJ Bessell, a fourth-inning single by Rines and a ninth-inning base hit by Wollerman. Dowling scraped together the game's lone run in the bottom of the fifth. Daniel Masiello led off the inning with a single and following an Erik Cabrera walk, Eddie Squeri's single would plate Masiello.
Timothy Flight (Portsmouth, R.I.) was the hard-luck loser for Southern New Hampshire, going seven innings and allowing five hits while striking out 10. Massad struck out the side in the eighth in relief.
SNHU wraps up its Florida trip Friday, facing Saint Rose in a non-conference game at 10:00 am before battling Palm Beach Atlantic in a 6:00 contest.