MANCHESTER, N.H. – The Saint Anselm College baseball team's late-inning rally fell short against Bentley University as the Falcons took the series finale by a 10-8 margin in a Northeast-10 Conference contest on Monday afternoon.
The Hawks drop to 6-32 overall on the year and 2-21 against NE10 opponents while Bentley moves to 17-20 overall and 14-9 in league play. Saint Anselm will head to Colchester, Vt. on Tuesday afternoon for a 3:30 p.m. NE10 tilt at Doc Jacobs Field.
Freshmen Nick Berry (Beverly, Mass.), Daniel Baker (Reading, Mass.) and Drew Boli (Falmouth, Mass.) all had two hits. Baker also had a double and scored twice while Berry drove in a pair of runs. Junior Ryan Schworer (Medfield, Mass.) pitched three-and-two-thirds innings of relief, allowing just one run on two hits.
The Falcons jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the second inning. After the first two batters reached on a walk, before advancing a bag on a wild pitch, Kyle Halloran grounded out to push across the first run of the game and put a runner on third. After Max Troiani walked and stole second, Jake Pierce drove in two runs with two outs to give Bentley a 3-0 lead after one.
Bentley added a run in the top of the third. Brandon Grover reached on a one-out error, before advancing to two bases on a base hit and a wild pitch. Gino Fordiani flew out to right field to bring Grover across the plate for a 4-0 Falcons lead.
The visitors added three more in the fourth inning, keyed by a two-run double by Ryan Berardino and a sacrifice fly by Grover to extend their lead to 7-0.
The Hawks finally broke up the shutout in the bottom of the fourth. With one away, Boli singled through the left side before senior Connor Parent (Katy, Texas) doubled to deep right center to score Boli all the way from first.
Saint Anselm got themselves in a bit of a jam in the fifth as the Falcons loaded the bases with just one out. However, an inning-ending 1-2-3 double play got senior JJ Dunn (Nashua, N.H.) out of the inning unscathed.
Bentley added a pair in the sixth for a 9-1 advantage. After a quick seventh for the Falcons, Saint Anselm began to rally back in the home half of the inning.
A leadoff double by Baker followed by a single by senior Tyler McKeon (Rutland, Mass.) put runners on the corners with no outs. Berry ripped a single through the middle to score Baker. With the bases loaded two batters later and two away, McKeon scored on a wild pitch to make it 9-3 in favor of the Falcons. Bentley got a run back in the top of the eighth, but the Hawks put four runs on the board in the bottom of the inning.
Saint Anselm loaded the bases with a walk, an error and a single. McKeon drew a walk to score Parent, before Berry grounded out to third to plate sophomore Matthew Butigian (Plainview, N.Y.). With runners on second and third with just one away, Baker scored the next run on a wild pitch, before senior Oscar Larranaga (Tucson, Ariz.) singled up the middle to score McKeon and bring the Hawks to within three runs.
After retiring the Falcons in the ninth, Saint Anselm tried to rally back in the last inning. After the first two batters were retired, Butigian doubled to right center to keep the inning alive. Baker reached on a fielding error by the shortstop, allowing Butigian to score the unearned run. However, the Saint Anselm grounded out with the tying run at the plate to end the game.
Dunn took the loss for the Hawks, going five-and-a-third innings, allowing nine runs, seven of them earned, on seven hits and nine walks. He struck out two batters. Jimmy Hodgson earned the win for Bentley going five and two thirds innings, allowing just one run on five hits and striking out five batters.