QUINCY, Mass.- The Eastern Nazarene College baseball team absorbed a pair of losses to New England College Thursday at Adams Field in the first meeting between the two teams since 2011, falling 7-1 and 7-3.
The Lions slide to 10-11 on the season and 1-3 in the New England Collegiate Conference (NECC) with the results. The Pilgrims improve to 14-6 overall and 3-1 in league competition with the victories.
Steven Pesce (Harrison, N.Y.) finished with one hit and three RBIs on the day. Zachary Carmody (Babylon, N.Y.) contributed with one base knock and one RBI. Connor Simpson (Haverhill, Mass.) scored a pair of runs while James Coury (Milford, Conn.) added one hit and one run scored.
In the series opener, New England College got back in the win-column with a 7-1 victory over Eastern Nazarene.
The home team grabbed a 1-0 edge in the bottom of the first inning. Carmody laced a two-out double to the gap in right-centerfield to drive in Simpson from second base.
The visitors generated four runs in the top of the fourth to seize a 4-1 advantage. Christian Aybar doubled to left to plate Anderson Jimenez. Luis Antiles followed with a base knock to score Shane McNamara from third base. Aybar and Antiles both crossed the dish on a double off the bat of Connor Morin.
The Pilgrims tacked on two runs in the sixth to widen the gap to 6-1. Aybar and Atiles scored on a long single by Evan Delaney.
New England College added a run in the seventh to push its lead to 7-1. Atiles singled to right field to drive in Anderson Jimenez from second base.
On the mound, Brent Houle (Westfield, Mass.) pitched five innings and posted one strikeout in his fifth start of the season. Brandon Imonti (Tewksbury, Mass.) worked two innings in his fifth relief outing of the spring.
In game two, the Pilgrims utilized a strong start to secure a 7-3 victory over the Lions.
New England College tallied three runs in the top of the first to establish an early 3-0 lead. Aybar crossed the dish as Delaney reached on an error. Xavier Nunez followed with a single up the middle to plate Morin and Delaney.
The visitors scored two runs in the second to stretch the margin to 5-0. Delaney and Nunez landed back-to-back RBI hits to drive in Aybar and Atiles.
The Pilgrims produced a pair of runs in the fourth to push their advantage to 7-0. Atiles tagged up and motored home on a sacrifice fly by Delaney.
Eastern Nazarene battled back with three runs in the bottom of the seventh to cut the deficit to 7-3. With the bases loaded and two outs, Pesce raked a triple to right field to drive in Matthew Urena (Flushing, N.Y.), Simpson, and Coury.
Brenndan Rogers (Hanson, Mass.) hurled three innings and finished with two strikeouts in his fifth start on the hill. Ben Petersen (Manchester, N.H.) tossed 2.2 innings and recorded one strikeout in his second appearance out of the bullpen. Daniel Rivera (Pougkeepsie, N.Y.) pitched 1.1 innings in his sixth relief outing and fanned one.
Looking ahead, Eastern Nazarene returns to action April 10 at Gordon.