April 9, 2014

Amherst Edges MIT In Extra Innings

AMHERST, Mass. – For the fourth time this season the MIT baseball team saw a game go at least 12 innings, with today's contest at Amherst College stretching out to 13 before the Jeffs prevailed, 6-5. Nic Meyer capped off a two-out rally in the 13th for Amherst, laying down a bunt single that scored the winning run.

Amherst (15-4) scored first in the contest, plating a pair of runs in the second on a pair of two-out, RBI singles by Andrew Vandini and Yanni Thanopolous. MIT (11-7) came right back in the top of the third, scoring four times to take the lead. Freshman John Drago (Peoria, Ariz.) led off with a double to left, moving up to third on a fly out. Senior Creed Mangrum (Sandy, Utah) then doubled down the line in right to put the Engineers on the board. He then moved to third on a single by junior Hayden Cornwell (Newport Beach, Calif.) before senior Patrick Dayton (Archer City, Texas) tied the game with a base-hit to right. After both runners moved up on a groundout, senior Sean Karson (Orlando, Fla.) came up with a big two-out hit, knocking one back up the middle to make it a 4-2 game.

Another double by Mangrum followed by an RBI single from Cornwell made it 5-2 in the fourth for MIT. In the bottom of the fifth Amherst made a one-run game when Alex Hero swatted a two-run home run to right. After a scoreless sixth and seventh, the Jeffs tied it up in the eighth when Anthony Spina singled with two down, stole second, and then came home on a base hit by Tyler Jacobs.

MIT, which had 13 hits over the first seven innings of the contest, was held without a hit over the final six innings by the Amherst bullpen. Eric Kotin threw a pair of scoreless innings, striking out three, while Mike Odenwaelder picked up the win after allowing just a walk over the final four innings, striking out three. The MIT bullpen was solid as well, as senior Brandon Lowe (Brier, Wash.), sophomore Michael Wymer (Flower Mound, Texas) and senior Rob Bertucci (Bellville, Ill.) allowed just four hits from the seventh through the 12th to keep the Engineers in it.

Spin led off the 13th for Amherst with a single, but Bertucci picked him off and then struck out the next hitter before Brendon Hardin drew a walk to start the game-winning rally. After stealing second, he avoided the tag at third on a fielder's choice play. Meyer then followed with his bunt single for the walk-off win for the Jeffs.

Karson finished with a 4-for-6 day, while Mangrum and Cornwell each collected three hits for the Engineers. Spin and Thanopolous each had three hits to lead the 16-hit Amherst attack.

MIT will return to New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) play on Friday, when the Engineers will host Babson College in the first game of a three-game series. Amherst will be back in action on Saturday when the Jeffs play a doubleheader at Endicott College starting at 1:00 p.m.