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Baseball team opens season with doubleheader split vs. Elms







SANFORD, Fla. -- The Bates College baseball team opened the 2008 season with a split of a doubleheader against Elms College Saturday at the Central Florida Invitational. Bates defeated Elms 11-7 in the opening game before the Blazers earned the split with a 7-5 victory in Game 2.

Bates senior Casey McCormack (Keene, N.H.) hit a grand slam for Bates (1-1) in Game 1, highlighting a busy game for the Bobcat offense. Senior Brian Buckley (Andover, Mass.) went 4-5 with 3 RBIs, including a solo homer in the first inning. Senior Erik Hood (Berlin, N.H.) and sophomore Josh Linscott (Portland, Maine) each went 3-4 at the plate, and senior Brian Mahoney (Sudbury, Mass.) submitted a 3-5 effort.

Senior Sean VanderVliet (Meriden, N.H.) started and went four solid innings to earn the win. Senior Ralph Vitti (Winchester, Mass.) earned one out of relief in the fifth inning, and junior Ben Thayer (Gorham, Maine) came on for three solid innings of relief to close out the win.

In Game 2, junior righthander Ben Shwartz (Mattapoisett, Mass.) started on the hill but was pulled in the first inning. Senior lefthander Simon Griesbach (West Bend, Wis.) came on in relief and lasted until the sixth inning, when Bates trailed 4-0. "Simon was phenomenal," said Bates head coach Craig Vandersea. First-year righthander Alex Gallant (Bangor, Maine) got the last out of the sixth and pitched a solid seventh inning.

The offense wasn't quite as potent for Bates in Game 2, but Hood batted 2-4 and senior captain Rob Patton (Darien, Conn.) went 2-3.

BOX SCORE: Bates 11, Elms 7 (Game 1)

BOX SCORE: Elms 7, Bates 5 (Game 2)