Baseball Walks Off With 8-7 Victory Over Bentley

Downey knocks in second-straight game-winning run

Quinn hit his first-career homerun 

EASTON, Mass. (April 24, 2018) – The Stonehill College baseball team won its second-straight game in walk off fashion as Patrick Downey (Cheshire, Connecticut/Xavier) connected for the RBI in his second-straight walk-off plate appearance giving the Skyhawks an 8-7 victory over Bentley University Tuesday afternoon on Lou Gorman Field in Northeast-10 Conference divisional play.

For the Skyhawks, Downey went 2-for-4 with one run scored, two RBI and a walk as he tallied his second-straight walk-off RBI. Thomas Quinn (Wilbraham, Massachusetts/Wilbraham Monson) also recorded two RBI as he went 1-for-4 at the plate with a run scored and his first-career homerun, while Rob Duarte (Raynham, Massachusetts/Bridgewater-Raynham) was the third Skyhawk to register two RBI swinging 2-for-5 at the plate with one run scored and his second double of the season. William Kelleher (Mansfield, Massachusetts/Mansfield) and Matthew Rocco (Newington, Connecticut/Newington) each chipped in an RBI as Kelleher went 2-for-3 with two runs scored and his 11th double and Rocco went 1-for-4 with a run scored. Jeremiah Vargas (Waterbury, Connecticut/Kennedy High/Taft School) led the five pitchers that threw with five strikeouts and four hits allowed in 4.0 innings.

Bentley started off the game with a three-run advantage, as two hits kicked off the Falcon attack. Mike Samko led off with a double to left field and Charlie Auditore got on as he was hit by a pitch. With runners on the corners and one out, Ryan Beradino lifted the ball over the left center fence for a three-run shot. The Falcons got two more batters on as they were also hit by pitches, but the final batter was retired with a ground out.

Stonehill cut the deficit to two, 3-1, in the bottom of the frame and with one out, the Skyhawks got the bases loaded and Kelleher flew out to deep right field bringing home Rocco from third. Bentley retired the side with a groundout, leaving two runners on base for the Skyhawks.

In the top of the second, three hits were allowed, but two strikeouts and a fly out stranded three Falcons on base. Downey led off the bottom of the frame with a walk and Quinn blasted his first-career homerun over the left center fence to give the Skyhawks their first lead of the game, 5-3. Orzechowski singled and moved around the bases, until he was halted at third on a line out to right field.

Bentley scored one run in each of the third and fourth innings, regaining the lead, 5-4, as Stonehill saw another run across the dish in the bottom of the third on a Duarte single bringing home Kelleher from second after he sent a ball down the right field line for his 11th double of the season, to sit sixth in the conference.

Vargas threw 4.0 innings, gave up four hits, one run, and struck out five

Three hits through four innings was the game changer for Stonehill, as the pitchers kept Bentley from scoring and four runners were also left on base through the innings. The Skyhawks capitalized on the scoreless innings, as they picked up two runs in the bottom of the sixth off three hits. Kelleher singled through the left side and Duarte sent a long fly ball to left center bringing Kelleher all the way around the bases, 5-5. Downey followed with his own RBI single to center field, advancing to second on the throw and scoring Duarte from third for the first lead of the game, 6-5. Back-to-back fielder's choice hits and a strike out left one on base for Stonehill at the end of the inning.

One more run in the eighth, extended the lead to two, 7-5, as Orzechowski doubled down the right field line and he headed to third on a wild pitch. Rocco drove in his 11th run of the season with a single to center field bringing home Orzechowski.

Bentley came from behind in the top of the ninth and with runners on the corners and two outs, Auditore doubled to center field bringing two runs across to tie the game for the fourth time, 7-7. The Skyhawks Harrison Sabo (Wilton, Connecticut/Wilton) reached on a fielding error and moved over to second on a sacrifice bunt. Bentley intentionally walked Kelleher to put runners on first and second, but with a groundout from Duarte, the runners advanced to get in scoring position for Downey. On a 1-and-1 count, Downey ripped the ball to right center for his second game-winning RBI this season earning Stonehill an 8-7 win and giving the Skyhawks the series, 2-1.

Stonehill (14-18, 7-12 NE10) will travel to New Hampshire to battle NE10 conference foe Saint Anselm College for their three-game series, starting with a doubleheader on Saturday with a first pitch at noon.   

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