Chris Kendrick (@CKendrick86)
NORTHBOROUGH, Mass. – The Elms College baseball team opened the 2016 New England Collegiate Conference (NECC) season with a 5-2 victory over Daniel Webster College at the New England Baseball Complex Wednesday evening. The Blazers move to 12-1 on the season, while the Eagles sit at 4-5 overall. The Blazers extend their program-high win streak to 12 games.
The Blazers broke a scoreless in the top of the second. Junior Jordan Zima (Berlin, Conn.) drew a leadoff walk, and then went first to third as junior Tim Gelzinis (N. Dighton, Mass.) laced a double down the left field line. Sophomore Dan Brunetti (Enfield, Conn.) hit a shot to second base that was mishandled by Devin Decarteret (Pelham, N.H.), allowing Zima to score. With the bases loaded, freshman Alex Hoss (Stafford Springs, Conn.) cleared the bases with a three-run double to extend the Blazers lead to 4-0.
The Eagles threatened in the top of the fourth with two outs and the bases loaded but Elms senior Tom Weldon (Springfield, Mass) induced an inning-ending fielder's choice to preserve the 4-0 lead. The Blazers had an opportunity to increase their lead in bottom of the frame, but DWC senior Curtis Hamilton (Lowell, Mass.) forced Zima to groundout to first to quell the threat.
The Eagles plated their first run of the day in the top of the seventh. With runners on first and second, Decarteret redeemed his earlier miscue with an RBI single to right field, scoring freshman Mike Habibi (Nashua, N.H.) from second to make it a 4-1 game.
The Blazers tacked on another run in the seventh as Gelzinis scored on a misplayed popup to shortstop. The Eagles trimmed at the deficit in the eighth with an RBI single from sophomore Mark Ruiz (Framingham, Mass.) to make it a 5-2 contest.
Gelzinis and Hoss led the Blazers at the plate with Gelzinis going 2-for-3 with two runs scored, and Hoss going 1-of-2 with three RBIs and three walks. Weldon (3-0) earned the win, allowing two runs on six hits with three strikeouts in eight innings of work. Senior Brian Langdon (Beacon Falls, Conn.) logged his fourth save of the season with two strikeouts in a perfect ninth inning of work.
Decarteret went 2-for-4 with an RBI, while Ruiz drove in a run on a 1-for-3 day. Hamilton (1-1) took the loss, surrendering four runs, all unearned, on three hits with three strikeouts.
The Blazers will return to the diamond with a non-conference road trip to Clark University Saturday afternoon. First pitch is scheduled for 3:30 p.m. Daniel Webster heads to Brandeis University for a non-conference game Thursday afternoon at 3:30 p.m.