Amherst Bats Come Alive in Rout of Springfield

Contact: Ben Badua

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. - Behind an eight-run sixth inning, the Amherst baseball team cruised to a 10-2 victory over local rival Springfield College to improve to 19-6 (8-1 NESCAC) on the season.

A day after splitting a NESCAC doubleheader with Hamilton, Amherst’s bats came alive, plating its 10 runs on 14 hits. Conner Gunn ’16 went 3-for-4 with a run scored and RBI, while Brendon Hardin ’15 finished 2-for-5 with a triple and three RBI. Jonathan Ramirez ’16 was 2-for-5 with two RBI, while Andrew Vandini ’16 had a 2-for-4 day with an RBI and run scored.

CJ Monroe ’15 plated one of the two Springfield runs, going 2-for-2, while Steve Starr ’15 and Frank Calabrese ’14 combined to go 4-for-7 with a pair of runs. Brent Poulin ’15 and Ryan Gower ’14 accounted for the rest of the Pride’s eight hits.

Scoreless in the bottom of the third, Starr led off with a single to center. Moving to second on a sacrifice bunt, he later advanced to third on a Gower base-hit before coming home on a wild pitch. Answering in the top of the fifth, Ramirez dumped a one-out, RBI single into left field. Looking for more the following frame, the Jeff offense erupted, sending 12 batters to the dish.

Gunn got the rally started with a one-out single to right. Mike Odenwaelder ’16 then reached on a hit-by-pitch before Quinn Saunders-Kolberg ’14 singled in Gunn. A Vandini bunt brought in Odenwaelder before a Nolan Stewart’ 13 single loaded the bases. Sending a base-knock into right, Ramirez recorded his second RBI of the day signaling the end of junior starter Alex Williams’ afternoon.

Greeting right-handed reliever Travis Lane ’14, Hardin promptly cleared the bases with a triple into the left centerfield gap. Taiki Kasuga ’14 then lifted a sacrifice into right to make it 8-1 before Bob Cook ’13 beat out a grounder to second. Stealing a base to move into scoring position, Cook came home on Gunn’s double to left, capping off the Jeffs’ big inning.

Amherst’s John Cook ’15 picked up the win, scattering five hits in six innings. Striking out seven without issuing a walk, he gave up just one run to improve to 5-1 on the season. Eric Kotin ’14 and Charles Nutter ’15 surrendered just one hit in a pair of shutout innings, while Riley Streit ’16 allowed a run on two hits in the bottom of the ninth.

With the Jeffs pushing across seven runs on eight hits in his 5.1 innings of work, Williams took the loss, while Lane gave up two runs on three hits in just an inning and two thirds. Peter Baranski ’14 pitched the final two innings for the Pride, surrendering a run on three hits.

Amherst returns to action on Friday, Apr. 26 when it kicks off a crucial three-game set with NESCAC West rival Wesleyan.