The Springfield College baseball team ended the regular season Wednesday afternoon with a convincing 9-1 win over Elms College at Berry-Allen Field.
Just a day after the Pride (19-12) allowed 19 runs in a loss to Amherst, sophomore pitcher Travis Lane took the mound and silenced the Blazers’ (13-19) bats.
Lane surrendered two hits to begin the game, but settled down and found his rhythm. After the shaky start, Lane sat down 10 of the next 11 batters, with only one reaching base by an error.
“When Travis throws strikes he is tough,” said head coach Mark Simeone. “When he had some runners on he made some good pitches and got himself out of jams.”
While Lane was dealing on the mound, his offense gave him some breathing room early.
The Pride offense posted a run in each of the first three innings. Jared Hopkins drove in Steve Starr in just the second at-bat of the game to give SC the early lead.
The next two innings saw SC load the bases, only to get a single run each time. In the second, Hopkins struck out, but the ball got passed the catcher allowing Mike Corletta to score. In the third, Mike Tanguay’s sac fly scored Karl Quist to give SC a 3-0 lead.
“It’s great to have them behind you to get some hits and things like that,” said Lane. “It makes it a lot easier to pitch.”
Springfield added two more runs to make the score 5-0. before Elms got on the board.
The lone Blazers’ run came in the top of the seventh off an RBI groundout from Andrew Kranontka, scoring Sean Shanley.
Springfield added three runs in the eighth for good measure.
Lane picked up his second win of the year, throwing six scoreless innings, allowing four hits and two walks, while striking out a pair. John Russell took the loss for Elms, giving up four earned runs off nine hits.
Tanguay went 3-for-4 with three RBIs, Starr added a pair of RBIs and Corletta scored four runs.
“We certainly wanted to win a game and play well going into the tournament,” said Simeone.
Springfield ended the season with eight more wins than 2011 and head into the weekend as the second seed in the NEWMAC Tournament.
“It’s been with a lot of new faces to be honest,” said Simeone. “Some familiar faces; guys who got their feet wet as freshmen with a year under their belt. Our two seniors (Quist and Corletta) have had very solid years.”
Although Springfield is the higher seed, the Pride will take on No. 3 Babson at Babson on Saturday. The winner of the game will head to Wheaton to play the winner of Wheaton/WPI later that afternoon.Regardless of not having home-field advantage, Simeone hopes the win on Wednesday carries over to Saturday. Lane echoed his coach’s thoughts.
“We’re ready to go for the weekend,” said Lane.
Terrence Payne may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org