Chris Kendrick (@CKendrick86)
HOLYOKE, Mass. – The Elms College baseball team was dealt a 17-5 loss by the visiting Becker College Hawks during a New England Collegiate Conference (NECC) contest at MacKenzie Stadium Tuesday night. With the loss, the Blazers slide to 8-16 overall, and 4-5 in the NECC, while the Hawks rise to 5-4 in conference play, and 12-13 on the season.
Becker grabbed a 1-0 lead in the top of the first as sophomore Evan Barrera (West Warwick, R.I.) knocked an RBI single up the middle, plating senior Vaibhav Desai (Waltham, Mass.) from second. The Hawks created separation in the top of the third with a four-run inning, ignited by a two-out RBI double from Barrera. Junior Kevin Perez (Jersey City, N.J.) smacked a two-run triple to centerfield, followed by an RBI single from sophomore Tanyon Ventres (Holden, Mass.) to push Becker ahead, 5-0.
The Hawks erupted for eight runs in the fifth to put the game away. Senior Nike Bedell (Manorville, N.Y.) kicked off the barrage with an RBI triple, and the scored on an RBI single by Perez. Junior Josiah Shepherd (Providence, R.I.) brought home a pair of runs with a triple to centerfield and scored on a fielding error to hand the Hawks a 10-0 advantage. Junior Chris Testa (Providence, R.I.) ripped an RBI triple to left field, followed by a two-run home run from Barrera to cap the surge with Becker leading 13-0.
The Blazers cracked the scoreboard in the bottom of the seventh, scoring five runs to work at the deficit. Freshman Andrew Serio (Northampton, Mass.) scored on an RBI fielder's choice from junior Ben Ross (Thompson, Conn.), and then Ross came home on a Hawks error. Following a sacrifice fly from senior Jordan Zima (Berlin, Conn.), sophomore Josh Berthiaume (Pittsfield, Mass.) launched his first career home run, a two-run shot, off the right field light post to cut the Hawks lead to 13-5.
The Hawks added late runs on a two-run home run from senior Nick Harriman (Harrisville, R.I.) and RBI singles by seniors Trevor Read (Colorado Springs, Colo.) and Samuel Derico (Latham, N.Y.) en route to the 17-5 win.
Elms senior Aedin Wadja (Lebanon, Conn.) and sophomore Alex Hoss (Stafford Springs, Conn.) provided multi-hit efforts for the Blazers offense. Ross drove in a run and scored. Sophomore Matt Plasse (3-2; Westfield, Mass.) suffered the loss, surrendering five runs, one earned, on seven hits with a strikeout.
The Hawks cranked out 20 hits, led by a 4-for-5 day for Barrera, who drove in four runs and scored four times. Perez plated three runs on three hits, while Desai went 3-for-6 and scored three times. Testa and Ventres added two hits apiece in the win. Senior Tyler Wagar (3-2; Uxbridge, Mass.) earned the win, allowing five runs, four earned, on ten hits with five strikeouts.
The Blazers return to the diamond when they host Lesley in an NECC doubleheader at MacKenzie Stadium Wednesday at 5:00 p.m. Becker travels to WPI for a non-conference game Wednesday at 3:30 p.m.