New Hampshire Hardball

Ravens open with victory

GARDEN CITY, N.Y.  – Things got dicey in the last of the ninth on Thursday afternoon, but the eighth-seeded Franklin Pierce University baseball team was able to hang on for a 4-3 win over top seed, host and No. 5/15 nationally ranked Adelphi on the first day of the NCAA Championship East Regional. Senior right-hander Evan Glew (North Andover, Mass.) allowed two runs in the ninth, but ultimately got sophomore catcher Jack Ryan to fly out deep down the right-field line to strand the tying run at third base at Bonomo Field.


With the win, Franklin Pierce improves to 29-22 and advances to play in the winner’s bracket at 9 a.m. Friday. The Ravens will square off with the winner of Thursday’s 3 p.m. game, which featured fourth-seeded Wilmington (Del.) and fifth-seeded NYIT.

Adelphi fells to 34-8-1 and was beaten on its home field for just the second time this season (14-2). The Panthers will face elimination at noon on Friday, against the loser of the game between Wilmington and NYIT.

Franklin Pierce got things started early on Thursday, with a pair of runs in the top of the second inning and led the rest of the way. Junior right fielder John Mead (Washington Township, N.J.) led off with a single up the middle and moved to second on a single into left-center field by senior designated hitter Ural Forbes (Freeport, Bahamas). Junior first baseman Jonel Ozuna (New York, N.Y.) cashed in both runners with a one-out double into the gap in right-center.

Adelphi cut the gap in half with a run in the bottom of the fourth inning. With one out, junior left fielder Lawrence Cicileo reached on an error and moved to second on a ground out. Senior third baseman Lucas Terwilliger followed with a two-out single down the left-field line to drive home the run. The Panthers left the bases loaded in the inning though, as junior right-hander Derek Duffy (Farmington, Conn.) got junior shortstop Tyler Becker on a sharp comebacker to retire the side.

It was part of a day where the Panthers left 14 men on base in a game they would go on to lose by one run. Adelphi also loaded the bases in the fifth, again with two outs, but again, Duffy got a comebacker, this time from Terwilliger, to strand the bases full.

Meanwhile, Franklin Pierce tacked on a run apiece in the fifth and seventh innings to push the lead out to 4-1. In the fifth, freshman center fielder Joel Lara (Boston, Mass.) doubled down the left-field line leading off, moved up on a sacrifice bunt by junior catcher Dylan Jones (Palm Beach Gardens, Fla.) and came home to score on an error. In the seventh, Lara walked with one out, stole second, moved to third on an errant pickoff attempt and scored on a wild pitch.

The essentially free run in the seventh would come back to haunt Adelphi, as its ninth-inning rally came up just one run short against Glew. Senior second baseman Brett Malm led off with a single through the left side, moved to second on an infield single by senior first baseman Thomas Colombo and went to third on a fly out. Two batters later, Terwilliger bounced into a fielder’s choice to plate the first run of the inning, and then sophomore Tim O’Connor laced a line-drive single back up the middle to cut the deficit to 4-3 and move Terwilliger around to third as the potential tying run. Glew would strand him there though, as he got a fly ball down the right-field line from Ryan, which freshman right fielder Graham Smith (Wilmington, Mass.) was able to run down to finish off the game.

The catch made a winner out of Duffy (6-2), who threw 95 pitches (63 strikes) over seven innings of work. He allowed one run on six hits, walked one, hit two batters and struck out four. Glew allowed two unearned runs on four hits, hit a batter and struck out two over the final two innings to nail down his third save of the season.

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