FORT MYERS, Fla. – A three-run bottom of the eighth inning erased a two-run Beacons (5-4) lead to give the University of Dubuque (4-7) a 5-4 win Friday afternoon at Terry Park on the final day of baseball's 2014 Florida spring trip.
For the third straight game in a row the Beacons did try to pull off a ninth inning rally. With two outs on the board, UMass had runners on first and third with yesterday's hero Anthony Gomes-Sirianni (San Francisco, Calif.) at the plate. Unfortunately, Dubuque would hold off the comeback kings, as they recorded the final out to earn the 5-4 decision.
UMass Boston never trailed in Friday's contest until the bottom of the eighth. They scored their first run of the day in the second on a throwing error. In the fourth senior Jamill Moquete (Boston, Mass.) gave the Beacons some breathing room as he crushed a two-run bomb over the left field fence to make it 3-0.
Going into the bottom half of the sixth, freshman pitcher Daniel Mantoni (Northbridge, Mass.) had held Dubuque hitless, but all that changed with they led off the inning with a double to left center. It was also in that inning that they would score a pair of runs to cut the Beacons lead to one.
In the top half of the seventh, UMass Boston pushed their lead back to two on another error by Dubuque which scored Bryan Failla (Torrington, Conn.). Failla recorded two of the Beacons seven hits as he went 2-for-3 with a run scored.
The Beacons started off the bottom of the eighth with a fly out to center field. After that huge first out, Dubuque would draw a walk to put a runner on first. The third batter of the inning would then line the ball up the middle to put runners on first and second. The next batter then singled to left field to load the bases.
Dubuque then tied the ball game at 4-4 on a two-run single, before driving in the go-head run on another RBI single with two outs. UMass eventually got out of the inning, but the damage was done, as Dubuque went into the ninth with all the momentum on their side.
In the ninth, the Beacons leadoff with a walk, but Dubuque would record the first out of the inning on the very next batter. With a runner on first the Beacons caught a lucky break on an infield error to put the tying run on second and the go-head on first.
Dubuque got their second out of the day on a fly-ball to right field which caught the runner at first base in no-mans land as they threw him out at second base. Despite having runners at the corners, the Beacons ninth inning rally would come up just short as Dubuque's Justin Naval earned the final out and the win, his second of the year.
Moquete's homer marked the second of the trip for the outfielder, while Failla's multi-hit day was the second of the trip for the infielder. On the hill Mantoni was solid through the first six, allowing two runs on three hits. He also walked three and struck out three in his second start of the year. Harlan Zeerip (Bridgewater, Conn.) was handed the loss after being charged with the three-runs in the eighth.
Baseball will look to make their 2014 home debut on Tuesday at Campanelli Stadium in Brockton when they take on Fitchburg State University at 3 p.m.