WORCESTER, Mass. – The Worcester State University baseball team swept the visiting Bridgewater State Bears by scores of 3-1 and 5-4 on Friday afternoon in Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference (MASCAC) action at the Kevin D. Lyons Diamond.
With the sweep, the Lancers advance to 9-12 overall, and 3-3 in the MASCAC. The Bears dip to 7-13 overall, and 1-5 in conference play.
GAME ONE: Worcester State 3, Bridgewater State 1
Worcester State's Tyler Barrie (Oxford, Mass.) pitched a complete game and earned his first win of the season as the Lancers defeated Bridgewater State 3-1 in the first game of the afternoon. Barrie held the visitors to just one run on three hits and struck out a season-high eight.
The Lancers' rookie Ben Palatino (Hudson, Mass.) led the offense, going 2-for-3 at the plate with a double.
The Lancers began the scoring in the bottom of the first inning when they registered one run on two hits. Palatino and Ryan reached base on infield hits, from where Palatino scored on a ground out.
The Blue and Gold added another run in the bottom of the third when Adam Barry (Auburn, Mass.) plated Jimmy Sheehan (Oxford, Mass.) on an RBI groundout.
Bridgewater State broke Barrie's no-hit bid in the top of the fourth when Kelleher singled through the left side. Two additional Bears reached base on an error and a walk. However, the senior pitcher was able to bring the Lancers out of the inning scoreless.
Worcester State tallied their final run of the game in the bottom of the fourth on a sacrifice fly from Mike Powers (Weymouth, Mass.).
Bridgewater State scored their lone run of the game in the top of the sixth on a solo home run from Feeney. The blast marked his first career dinger.
Bridgewater State's Connor Birch (Bellingham, Mass.) pitched well but was tagged with the loss on the mound. Birch pitched six innings and allowed three runs (one unearned) on five hits with three walks and three strikeouts.
GAME TWO: Worcester State 5, Bridgewater State 4
Brian Bonacquisti (Pittsfield, Mass) scored the game-winning run in the bottom of the seventh inning in the Lancers' 5-4 comeback, which included three runs in the inning.
Both teams scored in the first inning. Bridgewater scored on a Davide Tamarez (Roxbury, Mass.) RBI double to right field that scored Matt Cassese (Taunton, Mass.). Worcester State answered with a sacrifice fly from Seth Leslie (Phillipston, Mass.) that plated Palatino.
The Lancers took a 2-1 lead in the fourth inning when Kenan Kolanda (Sterling, Mass.) scored on an error at the plate.
In the top of the seventh, Bridgewater rallied for three runs to take a 4-2 lead. Five singles in a row, all with two outs, from Feeney, Carey, Tyler Morini (Plymouth, Mass.), Reed Pike (Bellingham, Mass.), and Zack Churchey (West Wareham, Mass.) staked the Bears to the two-run lead.
In the bottom of the seventh, the Lancers benefited from Bridgewater State's crucial defensive mistakes. Two errors along with three walks allowed the Lancers to engineer their comeback.
Offensively, Feeney led all batters, going 4-for-4 in game two, hitting three singles and a double.
On the mound, Kyle Baker (Fresno, Calif.) was awarded the win for the Lancers. Thomas Protentis (Lakeville, Mass.) was charged with the loss, as he pitched 1/3 of an inning giving up three unearned runs and one walk. Samuel Devine (Bourne, Mass.) got the start for the Bears, but did not figure in the decision. Devine allowed two runs (one earned) on four hits and three walks over four innings.