Baseball Rallies To Record Season Sweep of Southern Maine

 

WALTHAM, Mass.-- After spotting Southern Maine (14-13, 5-3) a three run lead, the Beacons (16-11, 5-3) used a five-run third inning to rally past the Huskies and earn a 7-5 win at Yetten Field to earn the conference sweep. The Beacons accomplished the feat behind big days from a pair of players being placed in new roles.  

Junior Nick Grassetti (Agawam, Mass.) played a key role in two of the three innings UMass Boston scored in, while making some key defensive plays in his first start of the season at second base. Grassetti started the third inning with an infield single and stolen base before scoring to spark the rally and in the eight inning Grassetti sent a ball off the fence in right field for a triple to drive in pinch-runner Luke Fischetti (Liverpool, N.Y.) and give the Beacons a key insurance run.

Sophomore relief pitcher Ryan Augustine (Burlington, Conn.) earned his first career save by pitching two innings of scoreless baseball. He allowed just one hit and two walks, while striking out two Huskies.

Junior first baseman Matt Consiglio (Southbury, Conn.), freshmen catcher Jack DeBiase (Prospect, Conn.) and Mark McCormack (Shelton, Conn.) all recorded two hits on the day and added an RBI. Sophomore Jamill Moquette (Boston, Mass.) extended his hit streak to 11 with a single in the bottom of the sixth and recorded two RBI as well. 

On the mound, Michael Boughton (New Britain, Conn.) recorded his second win of the season by going seven innings, after struggling early. He allowed three runs on three hits in the first inning, before giving up just five hits and two earned runs over the next six innings. For the day, Boughton allowed five earned runs on eight hits and struck out three Southern Maine players.

Southern Maine jumped out to a quick start with a pair of extra base hits into the depths of the cavernous right field at Yetten Field. With men on second and third and no outs, Southern Maine's leading hitter Tucker White smashed a ball to right field for his eight triple of the season to give the Huskies a 2-0 lead. White would score two batters later on a groundout to first base to make it a 3-0 game, before Boughton struck out the sixth hitter of the game to end the early rally.

After two sluggish offensive innings to being the game, UMass Boston broke out in a big way in the bottom of the third. Grassetti led off and recorded the Beacons first hit of the day on a trickler down the third base line that third baseman Nick Grady couldn't handle. Grassetti proceeded to steal second base and took third base on a wild pitch with one out in the inning. He was able to walk home during the next at-bat, when McCormack crushed a ball high off the fence in right field for an RBI triple that put the Beacons on the board.

Moquette followed with a grounder to short that the Huskies failed to handle to make it a 3-2 game before Consiglio tied the game at 3 with an RBI single up the middle to extend his hit streak to nine games. Freshmen Charles LaPaglia (Marshfield, Mass.) followed with a double to right-center to put runners on first and third base with only one out. DeBiase put the Beacons ahead for good with a sharp single to left field that scored Consiglio and advanced LaPaglia to third. Senior Mike Mattei (Spencer, Mass.) finished the scoring in the inning with a suicide squeeze that scored LaPaglia.

The Beacons added another run in the bottom of the fourth when Collin Keefer (Charlotte, N.C.) and McCormack singled back-to-back to put runners on first and third. After a wild pitch allowed McCormack to advance to second with one out, Moquette extended the lead on an RBI groundout to shortstop that may have been a double-play ball if McCormack had still been on first.

Southern Maine scored a run in the sixth and seventh inning to bring the game to 6-5, but their seventh inning rally ended on a terrific defensive play by the Beacons. With Huskies on first and third base and two outs, Southern Maine attempted a delayed double steal that the Beacons broke up. White took off from first base for the Huskies but was out by several feet on a strong throw from Jack DeBiase (Prospect, Conn.) to second base. Grassetti, making his first start of the year in the infield, skied above the base to catch the ball and then converted the run down with Consiglio, while making sure the Husky runner at third wouldn't score.

Grassetti would add all the insurance UMass Boston would need in the bottom of the eight. Pinch hitter Todd Ezold (Westfield, Mass.) walked on four pitches, before giving way to Fischetti as the team's pinch runner. Grassetti then blasted his third triple of the season to give the Beacons a 7-5 lead.

Augustine finished the Huskies off in the top of the ninth by striking out David Ricker and forcing White to fly out with two runnerss on.

UMass Boston will be back in action tomorrow when they travel to Salem State University for a 3:30 p.m. matchup.