Chris Kendrick (@CKendrick86)
FORT MYERS, Fla. – The Elms College baseball team was defeated by Alvernia University in a non-conference doubleheader during the 2017 Gene Cusic Collegiate Classic at the Player Development Complex Sunday afternoon. The Blazers fell to the Crusaders, 15-1, in game one, and then slipped, 3-1, to Alvernia in the nightcap. The Blazers dip to 0-5 on the season, while Alvernia rises to 3-0 overall.
Game 1: Alvernia 15, Elms 1 (7 Innings)
The Crusaders grabbed a 1-0 lead in the top of the first inning on an RBI double from junior Ben Dubas (Mechanicsburg, Pa.), but the answered in the bottom of the second as senior Stephen Harrison (Southbury, Conn.) drew a bases loaded walk to even the score at 1-1.
The Alvernia offense came alive in the top of the fourth inning with sophomore Ian Shaffer (Sinking Spring, Pa.) delivering an RBI fielder's choice. With two outs, senior Joe IacoBellis (Morganville, N.J.) and sophomore Nathan Sides (Media, Pa.) knocked back-to-back RBI singles, followed by IacoBellis scoring on a wild pitch and Sides touching home on an RBI single from sophomore Matt Briner (Media, Pa.) to extend the Alvernia advantage to 6-1.
The Crusader bats kept the momentum going into the top of the fifth, kicked off by consecutive bases loaded walks to junior Ethan Francis (Pittsgrove, N.J.) and IacoBellis. Sides plated two runs on a fielder's choice, and then senior Cameron Coons (Gansevoort, N.Y.) cleared the bases with a three-run double to left centerfield. Coons came around on an RBI double from Dubas to close the Crusaders surge with a 14-1 lead. Alvernia tallied their final run of the game on an RBI single from sophomore Connor Boyle (Howell, N.J.) to seal the 15-1 win.
Zima led the Blazers at the dish with a 2-for-3 game, while Harrison drove in a run and Hoss scored the lone Elms run. Senior Cody Lemieux (0-1; Torrington, Conn.) took the loss on the hill, allowing six runs, five earned, on six hits with a strikeout.
Game 2: Alvernia 3, Elms 1 (7 Innings)
The Blazers broke a scoreless tie in the top of the second inning as junior Andy Vasquez (Queens, N.Y.) touched home on an RBI single from sophomore Alex Hoss (Stafford Springs, Conn.) to stake Elms to a 1-0 lead.
Alvernia evened the score at 1-1 in the bottom of the third on an RBI single from Coons. The Crusaders pulled ahead of the Blazers in the fourth on an RBI single from junior Kyle Gaynor (Reading, Pa.), and then added an insurance run in the bottom of the fifth behind an RBI single by sophomore Alex Salesky (Sinking Spring, Pa.) to give Alvernia the 3-1 lead.
Zima delivered another 2-for-3 performance, while Hoss notched his first RBI of the season. Sophomore Matt Plasse (0-1; Westfield, Mass.) was saddled with the loss in his Blazers debut, surrendering three runs six hits with three strikeouts.
The Blazers will look for the first win when they take on Rivier University in a non-conference clash Monday afternoon at the Player Development Complex. First pitch is slated for 3:00 p.m.