Baseball Walks Off in Ninth Inning of Game 2 to Grab Split with Merrimack

Baseball Walks Off in Ninth Inning of Game 2 to Grab Split with Merrimack

HAVERHILL, Mass. – Junior Ken Morrisino (Longmeadow, Mass.) tied game two in the bottom of the ninth with an RBI single and then scored on a wild pitch to win it, while classmate Tom Hudon (Merrimack, N.H.) allowed just one unearned run over nine innings, as the Saint Anselm College baseball team walked off with a 2-1 victory to earn a Monday matinee split with Merrimack College at Trinity Stadium. Saint Anselm also rallied to tie game one with two runs in the ninth, but fell, 7-3, in 10 innings.

The Hawks are now 7-14 on the season, including 4-4 in Northeast-10 play and 3-4 in the Northeast Division, while the Warriors move to 11-9, 5-4 NE-10, 3-4 NE-10 NE.

Trailing, 1-0, entering the bottom of the ninth, the Hawks began the rally against Merrimack closer Nate Speilvogel when sophomore Matthew Flynn (Saratoga Springs, N.Y.) clubbed a one-out double to the gap in left-center. Flynn came around to score just three pitches later when Morrisino drove an 0-2 pitch right back up the middle and in to center field to tie the game.

Morrisino then swiped second and moved to third on a ground out before the Warriors intentionally walked senior Mike Hayden (Cranston, R.I.) to get to fellow senior Joe Morin (Salem, N.H.). Morin never had a chance to play the hero as Spielvogel uncorked a wild pitch that went to the backstop and Morrisino raced home to lift the Hawks to victory.

Merrimack scored its lone run in the top of the third when Sean O'Neill dropped a two-out RBI double down the left field line that fell in between three fielders to score Cam DiSarcina, who singled, stole second and went to third when the catcher's throw squirted into center field.

Hudon (3-3) was excellent for his third straight start as he allowed just one run – unearned – scattered nine hits, struck out seven and walked just one in 9.0 innings. Hudon is 3-0 with a 1.13 ERA over his last three outings.

Flynn was 3-for-4 with a run scored, while fellow sophomore Nick Bragole (Newburyport, Mass.) went 2-for-3 with a walk. Morrisino finished 2-for-5 with an RBI and a run scored.

Perry Kulaga tossed 8.0 shutout innings for Merrimack, mixing in eight hits, while striking out seven and walking one.

In the first game, Morrisino led off the bottom of the first with a walk, stole second, advanced to third on a fielder's choice grounder and scored when Morin, who reached on the fielder's choice, broke for second before the pitcher went into his delivery, but stayed in a rundown long enough for Morrisino to come across the plate before he was tagged out.

Merrimack knotted the game in the fourth on Paul Buckley's RBI single to center off senior starter Dave Kent (N. Falmouth, Mass.). The Warriors went in front, 2-1, in the eighth against the Saint Anselm bullpen when Matt Brown delivered a two-out RBI single to right. They made it 3-1 in the ninth when Pat Florence led off with a double down the right field line, went to third when Bragole charged a bunt and made a perfect throw to third to get him, but the ball was dropped, and then scored on an ensuing 6-4-3 double play.

The Hawks battled back in the bottom of the ninth, however, as a Morin hit-by-pitch and walks to Bragole and freshman Shaine Carpenter (Florham Park, N.J.) loaded the bases with two outs. Sophomore Jon McQuarrie (Salem, N.H.) drilled an opposite-field single through the right side that plated a pair of runs to knot the game. Spielvogel entered and recorded a strikeout to keep the game at 3-3.

The proved to be big as the Merrimack offense would put up four runs in the 10th. Following an O'Neill leadoff walk, Brown hit a ground-rule double to left that put a pair in scoring position with no one out. A wild pitch scored O'Neill and moved Brown to third before Buckley walked and Bobby Losanno hit a single up the middle to make it 5-3.

Florence then dropped down a sacrifice bunt and reached when the pitcher's throw sailed over the first baseman's head, which also allowed Buckley to score from second. Tyler Lyne's two-out single to center pushed another run across to make it 7-3.

Spielvogel would set the Hawks down in order in the 10th to earn the win.

Kent was very effective in his 7.0 innings as he allowed just one run on five hits, while striking out nine and walking one. Sophomore Joseph Levasseur (Rowley, Mass.; 1-1) was charged with five runs – four earned – on five hits, walking three and striking out one in 2.0-plus innings of work. Junior Tyler Buck (Franklin, Mass.) allowed one run – unearned – on two hits in his 1.0 inning of work, but allowed a pair of inherited runners to score.

Morrisino was 1-for-3 with two walks and a run scored, while McQuarrie went 1-for-4 with a pair of RBI.

Joe Carnevale started game one for Merrimack and went the first 6.0 innings, allowing one run on one hit, while striking out five and walking four.

The Hawks return to action Friday, April 10 at 3:30 p.m. when they take on crosstown rival Southern New Hampshire University at Penmen Field. Stay up-to-date with the latest news, including game previews and recaps, directly from the Saint Anselm College athletic department by liking us on Facebook and following us on Twitter @STAHawks.