Worcester, Mass. (April 19) -- In a Northeast-10 Conference divisional doubleheader on Saturday afternoon, the Assumption College baseball team dropped a pair of games to No. 26 Franklin Pierce University at Rocheleau Field. The Hounds dropped game one by a 12-4 final, including a 10-2 margin in the second game. The doubleheader completes the three-game divisional series with the Ravens.
The Ravens got on the board in the second with a solo home run by junior catcher Matt Walsh as his third long ball of the season just cleared the right field fence for the 1-0 lead. Assumption answered in the bottom of the frame as freshman Mike Coggeshall (Shrewsbury, Mass./Shrewsbury) scored on an RBI fielder's choice by freshman Matt Murphy (Wakefield, R.I./Bishop Hendricken). Coggeshall reached on a lead single to right center before eventually coming home to tie the game at 1-1.
Franklin Pierce put together a three-run third inning to take the lead for good as Chris LaVorgna launched a long double to left that cleared the bases for the 4-1 advantage. Jay Jabs opened the inning with a walk, followed by a bunt single for a hit by Justin Brock to get Jabs into scoring position. Brock was initially called out at first on the play as he appeared to go out of the baseline, but the plate umpire reversed the call. Calvin Graves bunted just inside the third base line for a hit, which set the stage for the three-RBI, bases-loaded double by LaVorgna.
Assumption loaded the bases in the bottom of the fifth, chasing Ravens starting pitcher Joe Flynn in the process with no outs in the frame. Sophomore catcher Tom Paine (Upton, Mass./Nipmuc), who reached on a leadoff single to left to start the inning, eventually scored on a fielding error by the Ravens shortstop to cut the lead to 4-2. Franklin Pierce blew the game open in the top of the eighth with an eight-run inning behind five hits and one Assumption error for the 12-2 lead. LaVorgna and Walsh each had two-RBI doubles in the inning to lead the offense as the Ravens finished the game with 12 hits.
The Hounds closed out the scoring in the bottom of the eighth with a pair of runs as Paine's two-RBI single to right accounted for the 12-4 final.
Senior Cody Rocha (Fall River, Mass./B.M.C. Durfee) took the loss for the Hounds to drop to 3-2 as he threw 129 pitches, including 83 for strikes. Over 7.1 innings, Rocha scattered 10 hits with nine runs allowed (eight earned) with four strikeouts. Junior Doug Willey picked up the win in five innings of relief for the Ravens, allowed two runs on seven hits with four strikeouts.
In game two, the Ravens again jumped out to an early lead with a two-run first as Walsh doubled to left for the RBI and the 1-0 lead. Marty Dunlap's RBI single to left scored Walsh and the visitors went up 2-0. Junior Billy Johnson (Auburn, Mass./Holy Name) got the Hounds on the board in the bottom of the first with an RBI single up the middle, scoring senior Ysander Figueroa (Worcester, Mass./Worcester Tech). Coggeshall tied the game at 2-2 in the bottom of the fourth as he took an 0-1 pitch over the right field fence for his first career homer. Franklin Pierce went back out in front with two runs in the fifth, followed by a four-run sixth that included five hits and an error, for the 8-2 lead. The Ravens added two runs in the top of the ninth to complete the divisional sweep by a 10-2 final.
Sophomore Ronnie Sampson (Jefferson, Mass./West Boylston) took the loss for the Hounds to drop to 0-4 as he scattered 10 hits with eight runs allowed (six earned) with one strikeout over six innings. Sophomore Paul Covelle earned the win for Franklin Pierce, throwing eight innings of four-hit ball with nine strikeouts to improve to 3-2.
With the losses, Assumption drops to 13-17 overall and 4-8 in divisional play, while Franklin Pierce improves to 27-14 overall and 9-5 in the division.
Assumption is back in action on Monday, April 21st as the Hounds take on Saint Michael's for a 1 p.m. neutral-site start at Stonehill College in Easton, Mass. That game will complete the three-game divisional series between the two teams.
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