HOLYOKE, Mass. – The Elms College baseball team opened New England Collegiate Conference play with a 4-2 loss against Lesley at Mackenzie Stadium on Friday evening.
The Blazers (3-12, 0-1 NECC) had several scoring opportunities throughout the game, but could not capitalize. After stranding a runner on third base in the first inning, the Blazers loaded the bases with no outs in the second. Lesley pitcher Nick DeGrenier, however, was able to limit the damage to just one run and leave the bases loaded.
With the scored still 4-2 in the bottom of the sixth, Josh Berthiaume earned a lead-off walk and reached second on a wild pitch with nobody out, but was eventually stranded at third base. The Blazers threatened again in the bottom of the eighth with runners on first and second when Keven Banas singled to center field. Pasini, however, was gunned down at the plate trying to score from second to end the inning.
The Blazers racked up nine hits in the game, two shy of a season-high, led by a 3-for-5 performance out of the leadoff spot from shortstop Ben Ross. Banas and Nathan Ayala each went 2-for-4 in the game. Slane's triple was the only extra-base hit for Elms in the game.
Matt Plasse (1-4) threw seven innings and gave up nine hits on the hill for Elms, allowing four runs, all of them earned, while striking out four. Cody Fisher relieved Plasse in the eighth and retired each of the six batters he faced.
DeGrenier (3-1) struck out six Elms batters in seven innings and scattered seven hits. Daniel O'Donnell Jr. allowed two hits in the eighth but worked his way out of the jam with two strikeouts before Jeff Heinz came on in the ninth to secure his second save of the season.
Justin Clark went 3-for-4 at the plate and hit two-run homer for the Lynx in the third inning.
The Blazers and Lynx will wrap up their three-game series with a double-header hosted by Lesley at the New England Baseball Complex in Northborough, Mass., on Saturday. The first game begins at 5:00 p.m.