April 21, 2010

Wheaton Tops MIT Baseball, 5-2, in NEWMAC Tournament

Courtesy of Wheaton College Sports Information

NORTON, Mass. – On Wednesday, the top-seeded Wheaton College baseball team had no trouble against number-six Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), notching a 5-2 victory during the first game of the 2010 New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) Tournament at Sidell Stadium.

The Lyons will host fourth-seeded Clark University tomorrow at 3:30 p.m., when MIT travels to number-five United States Coast Guard Academy in an elimination game. Wheaton, which is ranked 24th nationally and tied for second in the New England poll, won its 18th straight meeting with the Engineers to improve to 22-7 overall. MIT dipped below the .500 mark at 11-12.

Sophomore Lyon Dan Haugh went 3-for-5 with two runs and a pair of RBI, including belting a two-run homer in the fifth that put the Lyons in front for good. Haugh accounted for half of Wheaton's hits, while senior Paul Malaguti and sophomore Hal Landers each drew three of the hosts' 10 walks. Malaguti was also plunked, as he reached base four times in five plate appearances.

Wheaton sophomore Nolan Corr, who entered the game second among all Division III pitchers in ERA, improved to a perfect 7-0, yielding two unearned runs while scattering six hits with one strikeout and two walks in seven innings. Classmate David Longley tossed a 1-2-3 eighth with one strikeout, setting up senior closer Jon Shepard, who pitched a perfect ninth for his fifth save of the season.

Six different Engineers recorded a hit, with junior William Blackman driving in a run. Senior Stewart Park and freshman James McKinney each scored, while sophomore Chris Hendrix suffered the loss in relief, surrendering two runs on one hit with one strikeout and two walks over 1.2 frames.

Wheaton manufactured a run in the third, as Landers led off with a walk, advanced to second on a sac bunt and moved to third on a passed ball before scoring on a failed pickoff attempt at first base. Corr cruised through the first three innings, carrying a no-hitter into the fourth before running into trouble.

After a Lyon miscue put McKinney on second to open the fourth, back-to-back singles knotted the game. The next Engineer batter grounded into a double play, but the visitors plated their second run on the play. In the home half of the fifth, Malaguti drew a two-out walk and Haugh drove his ball over the left field fence for a 3-2 Lyon edge.

MIT put a runner on in each the fifth, sixth and seventh but came away empty, while Wheaton tacked on a pair of insurance runs on four hits in the seventh. Junior Sean Munley and freshman Eric Jensen had an RBI apiece.