WINTER HAVEN, Fla. – University of Massachusetts Dartmouth junior centerfielder Ryan Medeiros (Acushnet, Mass./New Bedford) recorded five hits, including four extra base knocks, to lead the Corsairs baseball team to a 9-5 victory over Western New England this morning at Chain O' Lakes Stadium.
UMass Dartmouth captured its second straight contest to raise its overall record to 2-1, while the Golden Bears fell to 3-6.
Medeiros set the table for the Corsairs' lineup from the leadoff position with three doubles, a triple, and a RBI to pace the 16-hit attack. Sophomore left fielder Connor Shaw (Goffstown, N.H.) went 3-for-6 and drove in a trio of runs, while junior first baseman Alberto Vasquez (Roxbury, Mass./O'Bryant), classmate shortstop Nick Farias (Fall River, Mass./Durfee), and junior catcher Cory DeMedeiros (Fall River, Mass./Durfee) each registered a pair of hits.
Senior Karney Boff (North Dighton, Mass./Dighton-Rehoboth) spun a gem in his 2014 debut, limiting the Golden Bears to one run on seven hits. He recorded six strike outs, while allowing a walk and a hit baseman in seven innings of work to collect his first win of the campaign. Sophomore Aaron Chouinard (Swansea, Mass./Joseph Case) pitched a scoreless eighth inning, while classmate Matt Russell (Townsend, Mass./North Middlesex) registered his first save by striking out the potential game-tying run with the bases loaded in the ninth.
UMass Dartmouth took a lead it would never relinquish in the third inning, breaking a 1-1 tie. Medeiros led off the frame with a double and was driven home by a Shaw single. The Corsairs crossed the plate twice in the fourth to extend their advantage to 4-1. Senior Wayne Bolz (Billerica, Mass./Billerica Memorial) produced a run scoring double, while Shaw scored Bolz with a single.
UMass Dartmouth broke the game wide open in the seventh with four runs on four hits. Medeiros registered a RBI single and Shaw capped the surge by following suit with a two-run single to give the local nine a 9-1 advantage.
Western New England would not go quietly in its final at-bat, scoring four runs off the Corsairs' bullpen. Pinch hitter Erik Laaksonen opened the frame with a lead-off double and Connor Hayes drove him in with a one-out single. The Golden Bears sandwiched a pair of singles between a double followed by a walk to chase sophomore Brian Clark (Exeter, N.H.). WNE loaded the bases with a consecutive walks. Freshman Kyle Garvey (Wareham, Mass./Sturgis Charter) was able to strike out Bryan Previte, but walked in a run to cut the Golden Bears deficit to 9-5. Russell was summoned from the pen and converted the save opportunity by striking out Laaksonen to eliminate any hopes of a Western New England comeback.
David Cherry was credited with the loss after surrendering four runs, three of which were earned, over the course of four innings.
UMass Dartmouth will return to action at 4 p.m. on Monday, March 17, when the Corsairs face Springfield College at Lake Myrtle Field in Auburndale, Fla.