CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – Seven runs scored in the fourth inning were enough for the MIT baseball team to put away the visiting Falcons of NAIA institution Fisher College, 9-5, Monday on Briggs Field. The win boosts the Engineers to 14-15 on the season, while the Falcons slip to 24-21 on the year.
The players faced a variety of unusual playing conditions in the early innings, as sunny skies briefly filled with clouds that blacked out the sun to near-twilight darkness, while a brief but heavy downpour soaked both teams as a Bell-Boeing V-22 Osprey took off from Briggs Field only 300 yards from home plate.
When the sun returned, the Falcons were first on the scoreboard, striking in the top of the second. After a single by senior Edwin Pena and ground-rule double from junior Reynaldo Nunez, senior Alfredo Torres brought Pena home with a single up the middle, putting Fisher up 1-0.
In the bottom of the second, MIT responded when sophomore Bryan Macomber was able to bring junior William Blackman home with a double to left field, evening the score at 1-1.
The Engineers added another run in the third courtesy of a sacrifice-fly by senior Stewart Park that gave junior Brian Doyle enough time to reach home and give MIT a 2-1 lead.
The fourth inning spelled disaster for Fisher starter Mike Callahan. MIT led the inning with two hits before junior Dan Hyatt reached on error, pulling in freshman Ricardo Perez. After Blackman walked, Macomber scored Hyatt and freshman Grant Iwamoto with a single through the left side. Doyle added a fourth run to the inning with a fielder’s choice, and with two runners on, Park hit his second homer of the season over the left field wall, adding three more runs, as the Engineers totaled 7 in the inning and racked up a 9-1 advantage.
Reliever Brian Meikle came in to pitch for the Falcons and closed the inning as Callahan (2-3) retired after 3.1 innings, having dropped 3 walks and 9 runs (8 earned) in his tenure on the mound.
Fisher was able to get one back in the sixth inning when sophomore Gary Lunetta singled to left center and Nunez was able to bat the run in, cutting the lead to 9-2.
Tech’s starter Chris Hendrix (1-4) tossed six innings total, striking out 5 while walking 2 and yielding 2 runs.
MIT struggled to create scoring in the second half of the game, picking up only 1 hit between the fifth and eighth innings. Four different Falcons took the hill during this time, never allowing more than 4 Engineers come to the plate each inning.
In the top of the eighth, Fisher’s Torres tallied another RBI, bringing home freshman Sam Alejandro. Later, freshman Yano Petruzzelli doubled down the left field line to score classmate Denon Rushing, and sophomore Richie Welch scored from third on a throwing error, as the Falcons notched three runs total to narrow the score to 9-5.
MIT closer Cameron Brown dismissed Fisher’s final batters in the ninth, throwing 2 strikeouts and 1 walk in the final 1.1 innings to clinch the game for the Engineers.
Fisher plays again on Tuesday, May 4, when the Falcons travel to Lewistown, Maine for a doubleheader against Bates College beginning at 2 p.m. MIT’s next game is at home on Wednesday, April 5, when they take on the Anchormen of Rhode Island College on (helicopter-free) Briggs Field at 4 p.m.