Jensen goes 4-for-6 with one run and two RBI
PROVIDENCE, R.I. – The Wheaton College baseball team, ranked no.14 overall in the latest D3baseball.com national poll, had five student-athletes record multi-hit games as the Lyons defeated Rhode Island College, 13-3, in non-conference action on Thursday evening at Anchorman Field.
Wheaton sophomore right-hander Mike Gibbons (Simsbury, Conn./Avon Old Farms School) spread out four hits, one run (earned), one walk and five strikeouts over six innings pitched. Classmate Mike Bisceglia (New Boston, N.H./Goffstown) tossed one-and-one-thirds scoreless innings, yielding zero walks and two free passes. Junior Ryan Grant (Easton, Mass./Avon Old Farms School) fanned one hitter in a scoreless ninth.
Senior Mike Farias (West Greenwich, R.I./Exeter-W.G.) was handed the loss on two innings, eight hits, seven runs (all earned) and one punchout.
In the top of the first, Lyons' freshman Matt Lavanchy (Walpole, Mass./Walpole) notched a leadoff double down the right field line to spark the offense. Classmate Mike Beneduce (North Kingstown, R.I./Moses Brown School) followed with a sacrifice bunt to the pitcher and senior Eric Jensen (Gorham, N.H./Gorham) ripped an RBI double to left field for a 1-0 advantage.
Wheaton jumped out to a 7-0 lead in the second with six runs on six hits, zero errors and one runner left on base. Senior Justin Connor (Arlington, Mass./Arlington) plated a run with a bunt single, Lavanchy had a run-producing double to left field and Beneduce drove in a pair with a two-base knock down the left field line. Sophomore Apolinar De la Cruz (Providence, R.I./Classical) picked up an RBI ground out and senior Paul O'Neill (Framingham, Mass./Framingham) brought home a run with an infield single to highlight the scoring.
The Anchormen broke into the run column in the fourth as junior Alex Verrecchia (Cranston, R.I./Bishop Hendricken) connected for an RBI single to center. Sophomore Tyler Collins (Cranston, R.I./Cranston West) added an RBI base hit in the seventh while senior Zach Hubbard (Kissimmee, Fla./Osceola) lifted a sac fly to center field in the same frame to cut into their deficit at 10-3.
Jensen paced the offense with a 4-for-6 performance at the plate, one run scored and two runs batted in. Lavanchy went 2-for-3 with two runs scored, two doubles and one RBI out of the leadoff spot and freshman Matt Knight (Fremont, Calif./Washington) was 3-for-3 with two runs scored and one RBI. O'Neill and Connor also collected multi-hit games.
Wheaton (29-10) will host the New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) Tournament championship round on Saturday, May 4 at Sidell Stadium needing just one win to claim its 13th conference title in the league's 15-year history. The Lyons will play the winner of second-seeded MIT and third-seeded Babson College at 3:30 p.m. The Engineers and the Beavers will square off at noon. Rhode Island College (11-26) takes on Plymouth State University in a Little East Conference (LEC) doubleheader on Friday with game one scheduled for noon.