#2 Suffolk vs. #3 Lasell
BOSTON – Since Suffolk baseball joined the GNAC in 2000, the Rams have appeared in the conference championship tournament and this season will be no different as the Rams via for GNAC glory and their sixth trip to the NCAA Division III Championship Regionals this week with the conference tournament.
Suffolk will host the first double-elimination game Thursday, May 5 at East Boston Memorial Park under the lights against Lasell, before trekking to Johnson & Wales' Scotts Miracle-Gro Athletic Complex to conclude the tournament over the weekend.
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First Round - Tuesday, May 3 (Single Elimination)
Game 1: #3 Lasell defeated #6 Rivier, 10-4
First Round - Wednesday May 3 (Single Elimination)
Game 2: #5 Albertus Magnus at #4 Johnson & Wales - 6 PM
Second Round - Thursday, May 5 (Double-Elimination Begins)
Game 3: Game 1 winner at #2 Suffolk
Game 4: Game 2 winner at #1 Saint Joseph's (Maine)
Semifinals - Saturday, May 7 (Hosted by Johnson & Wales)
Game 5: Game 3 loser vs. Game 4 loser (Elimination Game)
Game 6: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner
Game 7: Game 5 winner vs. Game 6 loser (Elimination Game)
Championship - Sunday, May 8 (Hosted by Johnson & Wales)
Game 8: Game 6 winner vs. Game 7 winner
Game 9: if necessary
TOP OF THE FIRST
- In the midst of a season already worthy of remembrance, the 30-10 overall Rams' look to become the first Suffolk baseball team to capture back-to-back GNAC titles. Suffolk, who garnered the second-seed thanks to an 11-3 league ledger, is the first team to eclipse the 30-win total since 2009 and fourth Suffolk squad to do so overall.
- The Rams have produced league leading numbers in nearly every major statistical category; runs (309), hits (4343), triples (15), home runs (26), RBI (276), extra-base hits (113), total bases (614), stolen bases (93), batting average (.332), on-base percentage (.417), slugging percentage (.469), ERA (3.36) and batting average against (.257).
- Individually, the league leaders bears a striking resemblance to the Suffolk roster as Rams top the GNAC in average and slugging (Kevin Belskie, .451/.620), walks (Seth Coiley, 30), on-base percentage (Drew Carter, .510), triples and runs (Brady Chant, 9/40), homers and RBI (Jake Frasca, 7/38), wins and ERA (Kevin Sinatra, 7/1.23), strikeouts (Kyle Turner, 53) and saves (Cal Carroll, 7).
LAST TIME OUT
After a tough loss to open the day, the Suffolk baseball team was able to bounce back with a 4-1 victory in Game two to force a split with Albertus Magnus in the final regular season game of the 2016 season at Rochford Field Saturday afternoon.
SUFFOLK IN THE GNAC TOURNAMENT
The Rams will be making their 17th straight appearance in the GNAC Tournament since joint the conference in 2000. Suffolk has escaped the do-or-die each of the six times it had to play in the tournament's first round, and reached the championship series on 13 occasions, capturing the title five times. Overall, the Rams are 41-20 in GNAC post-season play.
The Rams have won two of their five crowns as the tournament's second seed.
#1 Saint Joseph's (Maine) - 22-12 overall - 12-2 GNAC - WEBSITE - STATS - Rams vs. Monks in 2016 (1-1)
As the top seed, Saint Joseph's awaits the winner of fifth-seeded Albertus Magnus at fourth-seeded Johnson & Wales for its first tournament matchup Thursday.
Nic Lops has been the driving force for an offense that averages 6.3 runs per game. The catcher has 42 hits, 11 for extra bases, 32 RBI and 19 runs in 34 games, while Jameson Collins, who hits .326, has driven in 30 runs, homered four times and scored 13 runs himself.
The Monks have a staff ERA of 3.77 and they are led on the mound by Travis Godbout. Godbout is 5-1 in 10 appearances and six starts. The righty holds a 3.89 ERA with 38 a team-best 38 strikeouts in 34.2 innings on the hill. Josh Partridge, meanwhile, boasts a 2.40 ERA, a 4-1 record in eight starts, 45.0 innings of work and 37 strikeouts.
#3 Lasell - 20-15 overall - 8-6 GNAC - WEBSITE - STATS - Rams vs. Lasers in 2016 (2-0)
Lasell trounced No. 6 Rivier, 10-4, in the first round to advance to the quarterfinals where sit will visit the Rams Thursday night.
Skylar Beckerman is packing the Lasers' offense, hitting .411 with 11 doubles and 25 RBI. Hector Coscione has plated 25runs and brought in 24 himself on his 39 hits, 13 of which were for extras. Wes Hurty has produced a team-best 30 RBI and 22 runs, with Dan Gagnon adding 22 RBI and 20 runs.
Casey Johsnon and Gary Trottier hold the best records for Lasers' starts on the hill. Johnson's 5.63 ERA has helped the hurler to a 4-2 ledger in seven starts, 10 appearances and 40.0 innings. Trottier, meanwhile is 5-3 in eight starts and 13 appearances, with a 5.66 ERA.
#4 Johnson & Wales - 23-14 overall - 7-7 GNAC - WEBSITE - STATS - Rams vs. Wildcats in 2016 (2-0)
No. 4 Johnson & Wales will face No. 5 Albertus Magnus Wednesday in a postponed first-round game.
Dave Matthews is batting .380 with seven doubles, 12 RBI and 16 runs. Carlos Sanabria, who is hitting .351, leads the team in RBI with 23 and has produced 17 runs.
Keith Grant is 6-1 with a 3.43 ERA in 44.2 innings, while Jake Marchesseault has gone 4-1 and owns a 3.72 ERA in nine appearances this spring.
#5 Albertus Magnus - 13-20 overall - 6-8 GNAC - WEBSITE - STATS - vs. Rams vs. Falcons in 2016 (1-1)
As the fifth seed, Albertus Magnus will face fourth-seed Johnson & Wales in the first round Wednesday night. The winner will advance to double-elimination action.
Justin Poirier leads the Falcons at the plate with three homers, 11 doubles, 24 RBI and 20 runs. On the mound, Christopher Rivera and Malachi Emond are Albertus Magnus' biggest threats. Rivera boasts a 4.70 ERA and a 2-3 record seeing 44.0 innings of action and striking out 23, while Emond holds a 4.54 ERA, 2-4 ledger and 41 Ks.
#6 Rivier - 11-28 overall - 5-9 GNAC - Eliminated
In 40 games this season the Rams have surpassed their total of 54 stolen bases from a year ago, successfully stealing 93 bags, a number good for the most in the GNAC and 19th across DIII baseball. On the flip side, Suffolk opponents have 33 steals in 45 attempts.
Individually, Brady Chant and Jon Lapolla have swiped 20 and 16 bags, respectively, numbers that are good for second and fourth in the GNAC.
THE .300 CLUB
Seven Suffolk batters are swinging the bat well, hitting .300 or better in 2.5 dish appearances per game: Kevin Belskie (.451), Sean Cameron (.339), Drew Carter (.409), Brady Chant (.342), Jake Frasca (.320), Jon Lapolla (.362) and Rob Marks (.354).
As a team, the Rams are hitting .3325, the best average in the league, and a percentage that lands 10th in the nation across Division III.
The four top hitters for Suffolk – Drew Carter, Kevin Belskie, Jon Lapolla, and Rob Marks - rank amongst the GNAC's best bats. Belskie is first (.451), Carter is third (.409), Lapolla is sixth (.362) and Marks' is 10th (.354).
TEN HITS AND COUNTING
The Rams have put together double-digit hits in 62.5 percent (25-40) of their games this season, including seven straight contests with double figure hits from March 16 through March 26. Suffolk is averaging 11.1 hits per game, the most in the GNAC, this season. Suffolk produced a season-best 23 hits in an 18-4 win against Clarkson March 13, the most by the blue-and-gold since it tallied 26 over Norwich three years ago (April 24, 2013).
|HITTING STREAKS ATTACHED|
|HITS DURING STREAK
JAKE JACKS IT
Jake Frasca became the second Ram this season to hit two balls out of the park. The freshman knocked two balls over the fence at Curry matching Seth Coiley's one-game two-homer mark that he set at Endicott April 6. Frasca bombed a three RBI homer in the top of the ninth to pull Suffolk within one of Curry April 22. His three-run homer in the ninth came after the freshman hit one out of the park in the fifth to boost Suffolk's offense.
SETH SHATTERS IT
At Endicott April 6, Seth Coiley led off the fourth inning in style. The sophomore's second at bat extended his hit streak to two thanks to a long ball over the left field fence to break open a scoreless tie. Coiley's homer is the second of the second, in as many games and of his collegiate career. The Arlington, Massachusetts product is the first Ram to strike back-to-back home runs since the ABCA/Rawlings second-team All-American Mike Cunningham '13 did so three times in his senior campaign in 2013 with the last coming April 21-22 against Johnson & Wales and Albertus Magnus, respectively.
FOUR HOMERS AND THREE YEARS AGO
Four different Rams combined to hit four balls out of the park at Curry, the most home runs by a Suffolk squad since matching that number in a 14-0 victory over Rivier April 7, 2013.
Senior co-captain Jon Lapolla's two-out, RBI double in the bottom of the ninth inning lifted Suffolk past Montclair State, 4-3 in a walk-off win. The Rams had two walk-off victories in 2015, with the most important coming in the 13th inning over Johnson & Wales in the GNAC Championship game.
Kevin Sintara threw his way to his second weekly award this season as he was recognized as the GNAC Corvias Rookie of the Week. The freshman hurler was recognized as the conference's best hurler over a seven day stretch March 28 for his first collegiate weekly award. The recognition marks Suffolk's ninth of the season as Jake Frasca was named rookie of the week twice, Worth Walrod earned two pitcher of the week honors and Brady Chant, Drew Carter and Jon Lapolla all were tabbed player of the week.
HERO OF THE WEEK
Jon Lapolla continues to have a superior senior season as the Providence, Rhode Island native won a national poll conducted by HeroSports.com as the National Offensive HERO of the Week in Division III baseball March 29.
Lapolla was nominated for the honor on the heels of a 6-2 second Spring Break leg for the Rams and his first GNAC Corvias Player of the Week accolade of his storied career. The 6-foot-2 infielder beat out his competition, grabbing 87 percent of the votes, more than 130 than the second-place finisher with 146 of the near 200 submitted.
CORVIAS ECAC DIII ROOKIE OF THE WEEK
After turning in a five-run, four-RBI performance over the course of Suffolk baseball's three wins last week, the ECAC recognized Jake Frasca as Division III New England Rookie of the Week.