NEW LONDON, N.H. --- The Colby-Sawyer College and Thomas College baseball teams split a North Atlantic Conference (NAC) doubleheader on a cool and breezy Saturday afternoon. Thomas earned a come from behind 6-2 win in game one, while the Chargers came back to win the second game in eight innings, 3-2.
Colby-Sawyer goes to 7-7 overall and 4-2 in the NAC, while Thomas goes to 9-9 overall and 4-4 in conference play. The two teams will complete their four-game series Sunday with another doubleheader. First pitch for game one is slated for noon at Kelsey Field.
GAME ONE – Thomas 6, Colby-Sawyer 2
Each starting pitcher held the opposing team off the scoreboard for the first five and a half innings. The Chargers finally broke through in the bottom of the sixth on an RBI single up the middle by junior Jackson Musco.
Thomas then put across six runs in the top of the seventh with the big hit coming from senior Matt Romandetti (Palm Bay, Fla. / Palm Bay). Romandetti pinched hit with the bases loaded and ripped a ball down the right field line to plate a pair. Senior Nik Beeson (Manchester, N.H. / Trinity) also had a two-run hit in the inning to put the Terriers up 6-1.
Colby-Sawyer got a run back in the bottom half of the inning on a bases loaded walk by Liam Datres de la Blotier, but closer Dominic Esposito (jr., Portland, Maine / Deering) got a pop-up to end the game.
Senior Isiah Fleming (Fairfield, Maine / Lawrence) got the win for Thomas, going 6 2/3 innings without allowing an earned run. Esposito earned his fourth save of the season. Chris Mitchell Jr. (Avon, Mass.) took the loss after 6 1/3 innings with four hits.
GAME TWO – Colby-Sawyer 3, Thomas 2 (8 inn.)
The momentum Thomas created at the end of game one carried into game two as the first three Terriers reached base courtesy of a Derek Kane (sr., Natick, Mass. / Natick) single and a pair of Charger errors. Colby-Sawyer was able to regroup, however, getting out of the frame without allowing a run.
The Terriers had a runner reach in the second and third innings and had two runners in scoring position with none out in the fourth, but could not capitalize.
Thomas finally grabbed a 2-0 lead in the fifth inning. Kane knocked in senior Anree Benitez (Orlando, Fla. / University) with an RBI single to center field, then scored on a sacrifice fly by sophomore Alex Curtis (Monmouth, Maine / Monmouth Academy).
Colby-Sawyer evened the game in the bottom half of the same frame as Brendan Thurber was hit by a Matt Rutherford (so., Saco, Maine / Thornton Academy) pitch with the bases loaded and Jeff Dunn scored when Tim Donovan laid down a sacrifice bunt. Neither run was earned as the inning was prolonged by a couple of Rutherford errors.
After both sides went down in order in the sixth, Kane gave the Terriers a base-runner in the seventh with a one-out single to right field. The potential rally was shut down quickly, however, as CSC starter Mike Bowse got Beeson to pop out to Donovan at short and Curtis to line out to Doug Avellino at second base to get out of the inning.
The Chargers failed to score off Rutherford in the bottom half of the inning, sending the game to extra innings.
Bowse was lifted to start the eighth in favor of reliever Andrew Carbone, who pitched a perfect inning punctuated by a strikeout of Isaiah Arana (fr., Orlando, Fla. / Timber Creek) for the third out.
Rutherford had held Colby-Sawyer to just one hit through seven innings but was chased in the eighth after allowing a leadoff walk to Donovan and a one-out single to Musco that put runners on the corners.
Esposito was brought in and promptly got the second out of the inning as Donovan was tagged out at home when Avellino hit into a fielder's choice. He was unable to get the third out, however, as Frongillo dropped an RBI single into left field that scored Musco all the way from second for the winning run.
Rutherford (2-2), who was perfect through four innings, took the loss on the mound for Thomas. He allowed just two hits and a walk while striking out none in 7 1/3 innings.
Kane finished 3-for-4, while Benitez and freshman Zach Mathieu (Oakland, Maine / Messalonskee) were each 2-for-4 with a double. Beeson collected Thomas' remaining hit.
Carbone improved to 2-0 overall, pitching a perfect eighth inning with one strikeout. Bowse scattered eight hits and struck out a pair over seven innings.