HOLYOKE, Mass. – Elms College junior center fielder Steve Fisher (West Boylston, Mass.) drove in sophomore designated hitter Zach Dreher (Naugatuck, Conn.) in the bottom of the seventh to break a 1-1 stalemate as the Blazers pulled away to a 3-1 victory over Fitchburg State University in Thursday evening's non-conference baseball game at MacKenzie Stadium in Holyoke, Mass.
With the win, Elms improves to 8-15 on the season, while Fitchburg State falls to 7-17 overall. The win for the Blazers also marked the first in program history over the Falcons since the first meeting in 2006 (6-1).
In a game that was tightly contested throughout, both sides received solid pitching as Elms' junior left-handed starter John Russell (Springfield, Mass.) scattered just two hits through the first five innings and struck out three batters but earned a no-decision.
Freshman righty Geoffrey Frost (Ludlow, Mass.) tossed the final four innings and allowed just one run on three hits and dealt two strikeouts to pick up his first collegiate win and improve to 1-3 on the bump this season.
Fitchburg State starter Frank Yavorosky (Westminster, Mass.) tossed all eight innings in defeat, allowing three runs on eight hits while striking out three batters.
After three and a half scoreless innings, Elms tallied its first run of the game in the bottom of the fourth when senior left fielder Donny Morse (Alfred, Maine) laced a leadoff double down the left field line and then came around to score on a double-play ball to give the Blazers a 1-0 lead.
In the top of the sixth, Fitchburg State answered when Jeff Boice (Glastonbury, Conn.) was hit by a pitch and then scored from first on a double down the left field line off the bat of Chris Rivera (New Britain, Conn.) to even the contest at 1-1.
The Blazers forged ahead in the bottom of the seventh when Dreher ripped a double to left field and then scored on an RBI single by Fisher to give Elms a 2-1 edge. The Blazers then added an insurance run in the bottom of the eighth when senior second baseman Nico Iavicoli (Hampden, Mass.) drove a single through the left side, stole second and then scored on an RBI base hit by Dreher to extend the lead to 3-1.
From there, the Falcons put a runner on first with two outs but Frost issued his second strikeout of the game to end the inning and seal his first victory of the season.
Iavicoli, Morse and Dreher each had two hits for the Blazers, while Rivera added two hits in the losing effort for Fitchburg State.
Elms returns to conference action on Saturday, April 14 when it hosts Mitchell College for a pair of seven-inning games beginning at 1:00 p.m. at MacKenzie Stadium in Holyoke, Mass.