QUINCY, Mass.- The Eastern Nazarene College baseball team posted a pair of key victories over Becker Friday afternoon at Adams Field, triumphing 12-6 and 12-8.
The Lions improve to 18-14 on the spring, the highest single-season win total since 2007, and 7-5 in the New England Collegiate Conference (NECC) with the wins. The Hawks fall to 11-20 overall and 5-7 in league action with the results.
Anthony Esposito (Mount Royal, N.J.) racked up six base hits, five RBIs, and four runs scored on the day. Steven Pesce (Harrison, N.Y.) notched four hits, four RBIs, two runs scored, and one stolen base. Connor Simpson (Haverhill, Mass.) finished with three base knocks, three RBIs, and four runs. Joshua Bombard (Rutland, Mass.) collected four hits, three runs scored, and one RBI while Dylan Louviaux (Mohnton, Pa.) added three hits and four runs.
In the first tilt of the twinbill, Eastern Nazarene returned to the win column with a 12-6 victory over Becker.
The hosts snagged an early 2-0 edge with a pair of runs in the bottom of the first inning. Simpson crossed the dish after a failed pickoff attempt before Esposito tagged up and scored from third on a sacrifice fly off the bat of Zachary Carmody (Babylon, N.Y.).
The visitors responded with three runs in the top of the second to seize a 3-2 lead. Daniel Diaz doubled to left-centerfield to drive in William Negron. Coby Hussey followed with a two-run single to right that plated Michael Bianco and Diaz.
The Hawks doubled their advantage to two runs, 4-2, with a run in the third. Negron roped a triple to centerfield to knock in Noah Rivera from second base.
The Lions erupted for nine runs in the home half of the third to build an 11-4 lead. Pesce scorched a triple to the gap in right-center to drive in Simpson and Esposito. Bombard laced an RBI single to left field to score Carmody. Josue Basilis (Bronx, N.Y.) and Matthew Urena (Flushing, N.Y.) collected back-to-back RBIs as both absorbed hit-by-pitches with the bases loaded. Simpson and Esposito raked two-run base knocks to cap off the frame.
Becker tallied one run in the sixth inning to cut the deficit to 11-5. Negron hustled home from third base on a bunt-single by Diaz.
Eastern Nazarene reclaimed a seven-run margin with a run in the bottom of the sixth, 12-5. Urena smacked a triple down the right field line to plate Louviaux all the way from first.
The guests chalked up a run in the seventh to trim the gap to 12-6. Michael McMahon picked up an RBI as Ben Mazzone crossed the dish.
Brandon Imonti (Tewksbury, Mass.) pitched his second complete game of the year and finished with five strikeouts.
In game two, Eastern Nazarene outslugged Becker to earn a 12-8 win.
The visitors produced three runs in the first frame to capture a 3-0 lead. Tanyon Ventres doubled to left to knock in Mazzone and Hussey before scampering home on a wild pitch.
The home side pulled even at 3-3 with three runs in the bottom of the second. Basilis laced a single to centerfield to drive in Bombard. Simpson lifted a sacrifice fly to plate Louviaux before Esposito raked a double down the right field line to score Hunter Leroux-Porter (Greenland, N.H.) and Basilis.
The Hawks reclaimed the lead with a run in the third, 4-3. Bianco slapped a double to left to drive in Negron from second base.
The Lions generated seven runs in the fourth to establish a 10-4 advantage. Brenndan Rogers (Hanson, Mass.) and Urena both scored as Simpson reached on an error after landing a sacrifice bunt. Esposito followed with his first collegiate home run to knock in Simpson. Two batters later, Carmody belted his third homer of the season with a solo shot to left. Bombard and Louviaux both crossed the dish as Urena reached on an error.
Eastern Nazarene added a pair of runs in the fifth to extend its lead to 12-4. After a leadoff single by Esposito, Pesce clobbered his team-leading third home run of the spring to collect his team-best 31st and 32nd RBIs.
Becker scored twice in the sixth to trim the deficit to 12-6. McMahon motored home on a wild pitch before a groundout by Hussey plated Diaz.
The Hawks narrowed the gap to 12-8 with two runs in the seventh. Bianco roped a double down the left field line to drive in Rivera before Negron scored as Diaz reached on an error.
Briley Seiter (Bellevue, Ky.) tossed five innings and recorded a pair of strikeouts in his seventh start of the spring. Daniel Rivera (Poughkeepsie, N.Y.) worked two innings and fanned two batters in his 11th relief appearance.
Up next, Eastern Nazarene travels to Lasell for a non-conference tilt April 22.