LEICESTER, Mass. – Eleven was the magic number for the MIT baseball team today as the Engineers scored 11 runs in each game of a New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference doubleheader against WPI this afternoon. MIT had a five-run inning in game one and an eight-run frame in the second game that were keys to 11-3 and 11-5 victories that completed the three-game series sweep for the Engineers. Junior Creed Mangrum (Sandy, Utah) drove in three runs in each game, combining to go 5-for-9 with a double and home run.
WPI (9-18, 4-10 NEWMAC) scored first in game one, as freshman Vinny D'Ambrosio (Mahopac, N.Y.) led off the bottom of the first with a walk, stole second and then went to third on a wild pitch. With two outs freshman D.J. Ouellette (Watertown, Conn.) delivered the run with a single to right to give the Engineers an early lead.
MIT (14-3, 10-1 NEWMAC) broke through in the third when Mangrum delivered a two-out, two-run single that put the Engineers up 2-1. MIT then opened things up with five runs in the fourth to take control. Starting with senior Ricardo Perez (Vienna, Va.), who led off the inning with a triple, the first four MIT hitters in the inning collected hits. Freshman Nate Rodman (Corvallis, Ore.) and sophomore Karl Sorensen (Blacksburg, Va.) had RBI singles that made it 4-1 before junior Jon Rea (Palo Alto, Calif.) brought in the third run with a squeeze bunt. Another run came in on a WPI error and Mangrum completed the uprising with an RBI single that made it 7-1.
MIT starter, junior Kiel Jindra (Oceanside, Calif.), held WPI in check for most of his five innings on the mound. After giving up the first inning run, he surrendered just three more hits and two unearned runs and finished with nine strikeouts to improve to 2-0 on the season. Junior Brandon Lowe (Brier, Wash.) finished things off for MIT with two innings of two-hit relief. Freshman Mark Bentsen (Brewster, N.Y.) started and took the loss for WPI, going four innings and giving up nine hits and seven runs, five earned, while striking out three.
WPI closed to 7-3 with a pair of runs in its half of the fourth on a passed ball and a bases loaded walk, but MIT came back with two in the fifth and two in the seventh to clinch it, including a solo home run by Rodman in the seventh.
In game two MIT scored first in the second on a fielder's choice by junior Patrick Dayton (Archer City, Texas). Sophomore K.J. Parent (Knoxville, Tenn.) started for MIT and did not give up a hit until the third when WPI struck for a pair to claim the lead. Junior Sean Kelly (Shrewsbury, Mass.) led off the frame with a triple and then scored on a one-out RBI single by freshman Cody Holmes (Plymouth, Mass.), who then moved to second on a ground out. With two away freshman Anthony Capuano (Stoneham, Mass.) singled to right to score Holmes and put the Engineers on top.
MIT took the lead right back with two in the fourth, getting an RBI single by junior Parker Tew (Chapel Hill, N.C.) and a sac fly by Rea. In the fifth the third lead change of the contest occurred as WPI struck for three runs. The Engineers loaded the bases on a single and a pair of two-out walks for freshman Alex Venditti (Newton, Mass.), who singled home a pair to put WPI back on top, 4-3. Ouellette then singled in another to give the Engineers a two-run lead.
Sophomore Taylor Landry (Kennebunk, Maine), the WPI starter, settled down after the fourth and gave up just one hit over the next three innings. In the eighth, however, he saw the first six hitters reach against him, hitting three of those. Perez and Rodman delivered RBI singles to tie the game before Dayton was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded to break the tie. With the bases still loaded senior James McKinney (Wakefield, R.I.) brought two home with a single to chase Landry. Mangrum then delivered the big hit, a three-run home run, which clinched it for MIT.
Senior Aric Dama (Winfield, Ill.) came out of the bullpen to pick up the win, throwing a perfect 2.1 innings in which he struck out five of the seven hitters he faced. Landry took the loss, giving up 10 runs on 10 hits over 7.2 innings.
Mangrum finished with a combined line of 5-for-9 with six RBI and three runs scored to lead MIT. Rodman also had a 5-for-9 day, scoring six times and driving in three. Kelly went a combined 3-for-8 and scored three times for WPI, with Capuano, Venditti and Ouellette all driving in a pair for the Engineers.
Next up for MIT will be a completion of its NEWMAC series with Babson, with the Engineers hosting the Beavers on April 9 at 3:30 p.m. at Briggs Field. WPI will also be completing a NEWMAC series, as it travels to Wheaton on Tuesday for a 3:30 p.m. tilt.