FRANKLIN, Mass. – The Elms College baseball team extended its winning streak to three games with a 5-3 win over Dean to open a doubleheader on Saturday before falling 4-3 in extra innings in game two. After a win over the Bulldogs on Friday night, the Blazers picked up the series win with Saturday's split.
Elms (7-18, 3-6 NECC) will visit Springfield College on April 16 before jumping back into New England Collegiate Conference play with a three-game series against Southern Vermont on April 17 (DH) and 19.
GAME 1 – Elms 5, Dean 3
A three-run fifth inning played a big role in the Blazers jumping out to a 5-0 lead, and despite three Bulldog runs in the bottom of the seventh, Elms held on for its third consecutive win.
Elms strung together five hits in the top of the fifth, including doubles from Ben Ross and Thomas Slane, and singles from Alex Hoss, Josh Berthiaum and Nathan Ayala. Ayala's single drove in two runs to cap the scoring for the Blazers.
Three Dean (8-18-1, 4-6 NECC) singles coupled with a Blazer error in the bottom of the seventh led the three Bulldog runs to cut the margin to 5-3, but Blazer pitcher Thomas Owens froze Travis Dinsdale for the final out to strand runners on second and third. It was Owens' seventh strikeout of the game, as he went the distance and gave up just five hits and one walk.
Slane drove in three runs and was one of four Elms players with a multi-hit game, joining Hoss, Kevin Banas and Berthiaume with two hits in the contest.
GAME 2 – Dean 4, Elms 3 (8 Innings)
Elms' bid for a series sweep and four-game winning streak came up just short when Dean squeaked the game-winning run across the plate with one out in the bottom of the eighth.
The Blazers trailed 3-1 heading into the top of the seventh when four-straight singles from Ross, Hoss, Slane and Banas tied the game.
Jaeden Rasmus worked his way out of a bases-loaded, one-out jam in the bottom of the seventh to send the game to extra innings. But the Blazers went down in order in the top of the eighth and Dean got the winning run in the bottom of the inning.
Hoss and Slane each went 2-for-4 from the 2- and 3-spots in the lineup while Slane, Banas and Ayala each drove in one run. Elms finished with seven hits in the game while the Bulldogs had a dozen.
Brandon Bennett pitched four innings for the Blazers without giving up a run before giving way to Cody Fisher, who was tagged for two runs in one inning of work. Kyle Powell worked two-thirds of an inning and gave up one run before Rasmus pitched the final inning and two-thirds.
Dean pitched Gaten Davis tossed a complete-game and struck out five with three walks.