HAMPDEN, Conn. – The Suffolk baseball team scored at least one run in the first four innings to gain an early advantage it held onto as the Rams raised the curtain of its GNAC calendar with a 7-4 victory over Albertus Magnus at Hamden High School Saturday night.
SCORE: Suffolk 7, Albertus Magnus 4
RECORDS: Suffolk (6-13, 1-0 GNAC) | Albertus Magnus (4-11, 0-1 GNAC)
HOW IT HAPPENED
Suffolk put up one run in the first and second, respectively, to grab an early 2-0 edge. Brady Chant and Trevor Lee opened the contest with back-to-back walks and moved into scoring position on a ground out. Chant took advantage of Seth Coiley's 53 ground out and ran home on the throw from third to first to open the scoring. Rich Gilbride led off the second stanza with a double to left center, advanced to third on a sac bunt by Steve Shamnoski and scored on Ben Isaak's double to left field to give the Rams' a two-run lead.
In the third, Suffolk added to its cushion with a pair of runs. With two outs, Greg Speliotis' single to left field brought in Will Hopkins, who reached on a single of his own and stole second. Blasé Cormier matched Speliotis hit to the outfield to bring the senior designated hitter in, stretching Suffolk's advantage to 4-0.
The Rams tacked on two more runs in the fourth inning. The blue-and-gold got its offense going with two outs as Chant drew his second walk of the evening to keep the half inning going. The senior stole second and came home thanks to Lee's double to centerfield. Lee, who sniped third, crossed home on Hopkins' single to left to make it a 6-0 Suffolk contest.
Albertus Magnus erased the shutout in the home half of the fourth as the Falcons designated hitter Tom Crocco barreled a ball out of the park.
The Falcons held the Rams scoreless for the first time in the top of the fifth, before using a number of walks and a sac fly to cut Suffolk's lead in half, 6-3, after five complete innings.
Suffolk used a pair of walks, three stolen bases and a sac fly of its own in the top of the sixth to regain a four-run margin, 7-3. Albertus responded in the bottom half of the inning and restore a three-run game heading into the seventh.
The visitors reached on a Falcons mistake, but could not capitalize as Albertus Magnus held the Rams runner at third to look for a comeback in the bottom of the seventh.
Tyler Zell came in to deal for Suffolk and quickly put two outs on the board. A hit by pitch and back-to-back singles loaded the bases for the Falcons. With the go-ahead run at the plate, the Rams defense maintained its composure and sealed the 7-4 win on a 43 ground out.
- Ryan Pordes picked up the win on the rubber with 6.0 innings of work. The senior RHP allowed four runs on seven hits and five walks, while sitting down five batters.
- Zell earned the save thanks to a no-run, two-hit relief effort in the final frame.
- Falcons' starter Dan Zarnik went the first 5.0 frames, allowing six runs on eight hits and four walks with three strikeouts.
- Angelo Simonelli (0.1 IP, 1 R, 2 BB) and Omar Diaz (1.2 IP, 1 BB, 2 K) each came out of the pen for Albertus Magnus.
- Hopkins went 2-for-3 at the plate to bring in one run and score one himself to go along with one stolen base.
- Lee contributed one double for one RBI and scored one run and stole two bases.
- Cormier produced a pair of hits and one RBI.
- Spelitois and Isaak each had one hit, one RBI and one run scored apiece.
- Gilbride rounded out Rams with hits with one to his credit with the shortstop also scoring one run.
- Isaak, Gilbride and Chant all stole two bases each.
- Suffolk won its fourth straight matchup versus Albertus Magnus to improve to 36-8 all-time versus the Falcons.
- The Rams opened their GNAC slate versus the Falcons for the first time since 2002.
- Suffolk rattled off its fifth consecutive conference opening win.
- Suffolk remains undefeated in the first game of the conference calendar in the Anthony Del Prete era.
- The Rams stole a season-best nine bases, which marks the most stolen bases by a Suffolk team since swiping nine in a 9-2 win at Norwich April 17, 2016
- Lee, who is on a three-game hit streak, stole a season-high two bases.
- Hopkins had multiple hits for the fifth time in his career.
- Cormier tallied a career-best two hits for the third consecutive contest.
- Gilbride, who has registered a hit in the last four games, has stolen two bases in back-to-back games.
- Isaak stole a base for the first time in his collegiate career and finished the night with two stolen bags.
Suffolk and Albertus Magnus will meet at a later to be determined date to make up the final game in the series. The Rams will be back in action tomorrow as it takes on Lasell at East Boston Memorial Park as the visiting team. Game one is set to begin at 2 p.m.