Gibbons picks up win in game one versus Owls
LEESBURG, Fla. – The Wheaton College baseball team, ranked No. 11 in the latest D3baseball.com Top-25 national poll, split a pair of non-conference games against Keene State College and No. 5 Wisconsin-Stevens Point on Saturday evening at Pat Thomas Stadium. The Lyons defeated Keene State, 6-4, in game one and fell in the nightcap to the Pointers, 8-2.
Wheaton 6, Keene State 4
Junior right-hander Mike Gibbons (Simsbury, Conn./Avon Old Farms) improved to 2-0 on the season tossing six innings while allowing six hits, three runs (all earned) and two walks along with a career-high eight strikeouts. Senior closer Ryan Grant (Easton, Mass./Avon Old Farms) collected his sixth save of the season yielding just one hit over 1 2/3 scoreless innings of work out of the pen.
Keene State sophomore Cody Dube (Windham, Maine/Windham) suffered the loss on four innings, five hits, six runs (three earned), three free passes and four punchouts. Classmate Julian Haddad (Mount Kisco, N.Y./Fox Lane) and junior Alex Fiste (Lynn, Mass./St. Mary's) held the Lyons scoreless over the remaining five innings of the game.
Wheaton claimed a 3-0 lead in the top of the third inning as junior Mike Bisceglia (New Boston, N.H./Goffstown) slugged a two-run double to deep-center field and later scored on a throwing error.
Keene State responded in the bottom half with a pair of runs on a bases loaded walk and a fielder's choice RBI.
The Lyons tacked on three more runs in the fourth with an RBI single to right field off the bat of sophomore Matt Lavanchy (Walpole, Mass./Walpole) and a two-run single up the middle by junior Apolinar De La Cruz (Providence, R.I./Classical).
In the fifth, the Owls threatened with runners on first and second with two outs but sophomore center fielder Jimmy Smith (Worcester, Mass./Saint John's) robbed Keene State senior Andrew Gummow (Brookline, Mass./Brookline) of a potential two-run double to the right-center gap tracking down the fly ball at full speed near the warning track. The Owls had already cut into the deficit in the frame at 6-3 with a sac fly to center and nearly shaved the differential to one run as both base runners were off on the pitch.
Grant went on to close out the contest recording a five-out save with one strikeout, two ground outs, a fly out and a pop out.
Wisconsin-Stevens Point 8, Wheaton 2
Wheaton freshman left-hander Michael Bruemmel (Bridgewater, Mass./Bridgewater-Raynham) and Wisconsin-Stevens Point righty JP Feyereisen (River Falls, Wisc./River Falls) were locked into a classic pitchers' duel before the game broke open for the Pointers in the sixth.
From the first to the fifth, Bruemmel recorded seven strikeouts including four looking while holding the Wisconsin-Stevens Point offense to just two hits. Feyereisen was equally as impressive fanning eight batters during that stretch.
The Pointers offense broke the game open in the top of the sixth inning with six runs on six hits and two walks. Wheaton sophomore Mike Beneduce (North Kingstown, R.I./Moses Brown School) put the Lyons on the scoreboard in the ninth with a ground rule RBI double to left field, while senior Kevin Foley (Southbury, Conn./Pomperaug) notched a run-producing single up the middle for the final score of 8-2.
Foley finished the contest at the plate going 3-for-5 with three singles and one RBI.
Wheaton (7-3) is set to play Bridgewater State University when it returns from Florida on Thursday, March 20 at 3:30 p.m.