Lyons extend winning streak to 11 games
NEW LONDON, Conn. – The Wheaton College baseball team, ranked No. 23 in the latest D3baseball.com Top 25 poll, defeated Coast Guard Academy, 25-5, in a New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) contest on Wednesday evening at Nitchman Field.
Lyons' freshman left-hander Michael Bruemmel (Bridgewater, Mass./Bridgewater-Raynham) pitched 5 2/3 innings, allowed nine hits, five runs (all earned), no walks and struck out one batter to improve to 4-2 on the season. Seniors Gordy Thomas (Wellesley, Mass./Wellesley) and Ryan Grant (Easton, Mass./Avon Old Farms) and sophomores Mike Koperniak (Adams, Mass./Hoosac Valley) and Steve Consiglio (Southbury, Conn./Pomperaug) combined to shut out the Bears over the remaining 3 1/3 innings compiling three strikeouts during that span.
Coast Guard freshman Eric Vrissis (Stamford, Conn.) was dealt the loss over 4 1/3 innings pitched, while yielding 11 hits, 12 runs (all earned) and four walks alongside one strikeout.
Wheaton jumped out to an 8-2 lead over the first four innings of play as the Lyons tallied three 2-run home runs. Sophomore Justin Silvestro (Waltham, Mass./BC High) belted his first career home run in the second and also added another two-run shot in the third after classmate Matt Lavanchy (Walpole, Mass./Walpole) launched a two-run shot of his own to right field in the frame.
The Blue and White put the game away in the fifth with five runs on five hits, zero errors and three runners left on base. Freshman Joshua LaJoie (Somers, Conn./Avon Old Farms) had an RBI single to center and Lavanchy pushed across a run on a fielder's choice. Junior Apolinar De La Cruz (Providence, R.I./Classical) notched an RBI infield single to short, while Lavanchy eventually scored on a wild pitch and Silvestro knocked in a run with a base knock.
Trailing 15-2 in the sixth, Coast Guard scored three times in the bottom of the sixth to pull within 15-5 on a two-run double to center by sophomore Cory Sonnega (Shoreline, Wash.) and an RBI double to left field off the bat of freshman Brendan McNeil (Pawcatuck, Conn.).
Wheaton tacked on ten more runs over the next three innings on nine hits to finish the contest with 24 total. Lavanchy ended the afternoon going 3-for-6 with two runs scored and a career-high six RBI. Silvestro concluded his day at the plate with a 3-for-4 performance, two runs and six RBI, also a career-high.
Sophomore Jimmy Smith (Worcester, Mass./Saint John's), junior Zach Bombard (Belchertown, Mass./Cathedral), classmate Justin Peluso (North Reading, Mass./Saint John's Prep) and sophomore Brett Fontaine (Newburyport, Mass./Newburyport) all had multi-hit games for the Lyons.
Freshman Zachary Goodwin-Boyd (Florence, Mass./Northampton) also had a pinch-hit three-run home run in the eighth, his first career collegiate hit.
Wheaton (19-6-1, 8-2 NEWMAC) travels to Eastern Connecticut State University tomorrow for a non-conference game at 4 p.m. Coast Guard (9-15, 4-6 NEWMAC) plays WPI in a league matchup on Friday at 3:30 p.m.