Baseball: Judges falter in extra innings
Published: Monday, March 26, 2012
Updated: Monday, March 26, 2012 18:03
The Judges had all of the momentum heading into the 10th inning of last Sunday’s game against Framingham State University. Starting pitcher Pat Nicholson ’11 MA ’12 was in cruise control after a rough start, delivering seven scoreless innings. The offense scrapped together a rally by driving in three runs to send the game into extra innings. Fate finally was in the Judges’ favor until the 10th inning.
Framingham State brought in two runs and shut down the Brandeis offense in the bottom of the frame en route to a 5-3 victory.
Late-inning struggles seemed to be the theme of the week for Brandeis. The team suffered two of its four losses in extra innings. Despite forcing extra innings on Sunday, the Judges lost their fourth game of the week to the 8-7 Framingham Rams, who took a 3-0 lead in the top of the second inning.
“It was a little up and down today,” said pitcher Alex Tynan ’12. “They put up three in the second inning. Their guy [senior Ryan Stoller] was throwing strikes and doing well.”
Following the second inning, Nicholson, who didn’t allow a run for the rest of the game, was relieved in the ninth inning by first baseman Kyle Brenner ’15. The offense, meanwhile, finally began to click in the eighth inning, with an RBI single by outfielder Zachary Malis ’12 to cut the deficit to two runs.
With the score still 3-1, the game would take another twist in the bottom of the ninth. The Judges scored two runs to send the game into extra innings with RBI hits from catcher Kenny Destremps ’12 and infielder Brian Allen ’15. Malis then almost won the game for the Judges with a shot to left field, but it was not to be – the screamer just went left of the foul pole to keep the game tied.
However, the Judges would regret that missed opportunity. Framingham State scored two runs in the top of the 10th with RBI singles from sophomore and Waltham native Ivan Colon and senior Chris Cole. Although the Judges made it interesting, boasting two runners on base with two outs in the bottom of the 10th, Framingham sophomore reliever Brendan Busa was able to get the win.
“In baseball, the little things really can come back to get you,” said Tynan. “When you have a bad day individually, you feel bad for the team.”
Brandeis dropped another tough game at Salve Regina University last Thursday. Though the bats were alive for the Judges on that day, pitcher Mike Swerdloff ‘13 suffered the loss on the hill. In the game, Brandeis trailed 8-4 going into the eighth inning. The Judges relied again on some late-inning magic, scoring three runs to pull within a run. However, the Seahawks managed to get some breathing room, scoring an insurance run in the ninth to account for the 9-7 final score.
Brandeis suffered another 10-inning loss earlier in the week, falling 11-5 at home to Wentworth Institute of Technology last Wednesday. Similarly, the Judges rallied from a late 5-2 deficit to force extra innings. From there, it was not a pretty scene, as Brian Ing ’14 conceded six runs. Ing took the loss for Brandeis in that game, relieving Brenner, who had faced 39 batters and allowed eleven hits in his eight innings, while tossing five Ks.
The Judges also fell at home to Bridgewater State University on opening day by a score of 19-4, as Colin Markel ’14 took the loss on the mound. The visiting Bears piled on 13 runs in the first two innings to put the game out of reach for the Judges.
Brandeis managed to scrape together a late comeback, piling on four runs in the seventh and eighth innings. However, the effort proved to be too late.
Despite the team's rough luck, Tynan explained that one of the best things about baseball is that, with the increased amount of games, there are plenty of opportunities to turn things around.
“The best thing you can do is just to get out and practice,” he said. “We don’t have many long layovers, and tomorrow’s game [at Salem State University] will be a great opportunity to get things back on track. We have good composure and the ability to bounce back; we just need to go and do it.”
The Judges will try to gain some momentum in a match at home tomorrow vs. Suffolk University at 3:00 p.m.