Comeback win helps baseball split at Emory

ATLANTA, Ga. -- The Bates College baseball team won the first game of its doubleheader by a 5-4 score at Emory University on Sunday -- the Bobcats' fourth straight win -- before the host Eagles took Game 2 6-3 at Chappell Park.

The Bobcats capped the day with a third game, a nine-inning 7-1 setback at Oglethorpe University on Sunday night to make up for the teams' rescheduled doubleheader on Saturday.

With the doubleheader split, both Emory, the two-team defending UAA champion, and Bates stood at 4-2 on the season.

In Game 1, the Bobcats scored three runs in the top of the seventh to erase Emory's 4-2 lead, and junior Dean Bonneau (Amherst, Mass.) pitched a perfect bottom of the seventh for his second save. It was the second straight game that Bates came from behind in the final inning -- on Saturday against Oglethorpe, the Bobcats scored nine in the ninth inning to win 14-9.

Emory carried a 4-2 lead into the top of the seventh inning against Bates in the early contest, behind a two-RBI day from Jack Karras. Sophomore Mekae Hyde (Lewiston, Maine), pinch hitting to lead off the inning, drew a walk from Emory junior Matt McMahon, who went on to give free passes to senior Ryan Sonberg (Windsor, Conn.) and junior Kevin Davis (Andover, Mass.) as well to load the bases with no outs. Graham Bloomsmith then replaced McMahon (0-1) and was greeted by junior Griff Tewksbury's (Concord, N.H.) single to left, scoring Hyde. With no outs still, back-to-back fielder's choices to short by first-year Sam Berry (South Hamilton, Mass.) and junior Steve Burke (Bedford, N.H.) scored Sonberg and Davis for the tying and go-ahead runs.

First-year Chris Ward (Pasadena, Calif.) earned his first win for Bates by pitching a scoreless sixth inning in relief of junior starter Tom Baroni (Mount Kisco, N.Y.), who gave up four runs on seven hits and two walks over five innings.

Burke and senior Kevin McGregor (Randolph, N.J.) both went 3-for-4 in the game, with Burke and Tewksbury (2-for-4) driving in two runs apiece.

Sophomore Brett Lake, junior Jared Kahn and sophomore Jordan Selbach each had two-hit games for the Eagles in the early contest.

Emory was able to bounce in the late game, scoring five runs in the first inning and preserving the lead behind strong pitching from a pair of freshmen. Paul Merolla allowed three runs on seven hits and one walk, while striking out two, earning his first collegiate victory. Steven Summey closed out the game with 2.2 scoreless innings, allowing three hits and striking out three for the first save of his career.

Bates scored a run in the top of the first, when Sonberg belted a leadoff double, went to third on a wild pitch and came home on Tewksbury's sacrifice fly. But Emory scored five runs, only one of them earned in the bottom of the inning, using five hits and taking advantage of an error behind senior righthanded starting pitcher Mike Antonellis (Sudbury, Mass.).

Antonellis (0-2) then strung together three scoreless innings, while Bates picked up single runs in the second and fifth innings to cut Emory's lead to 5-3. McGregor hit a leadoff single in the second, made it to third on a double by first-year Samuel Warren (Norfolk, Va.), then scored on a sac fly by sophomore Rockwell Jackson (Fort Worth, Texas). In the fifth, Sonberg laid down a one-out bunt single, advanced to second on a wild pitch, then came home when Hyde singled and Emory's third baseman committed a throwing error.

In the sixth inning, facing Bates first-year Connor Colombo (Mendon, Mass.), Kahn drove in an insurance run with a single after a 10-pitch at bat to make it 6-3.

Warren was 3-for-3 and Sonberg and Tewksbury had two hits apiece as Bates accumulated 10 hits in the contest. Dylan Eisner had two of Emory's seven hits in the game.

Oglethorpe 7, Bates 1: At Oglethorpe, Bates was limited to three hits -- one apiece by Warren, Burke and Berry -- in a 7-1 loss to the Stormy Petrels (1-5), who gained their first win of the season while Bates dropped to 4-3.

Bates trailed 2-1 after scoring a run in the top of the sixth inning -- Warren hit a one-out double down the right-field line, then advanced to third and came home on a pair of wild pitches.

Oglethorpe scored two runs off of Bates junior lefthander Brad Reynolds (Lafayette, Colo.) in the bottom of the inning to make it 4-1. The Petrels added three more runs in the seventh off of Reynolds and sophomore Sam Maliska (Palo Alto, Calif.), on two hits and two Bates errors.

Junior lefthander Chris Fusco (Annapolis, Md.) pitched impressively in his second start of the season, striking out seven Petrels and and allowing two runs (one earned) on five hits and a walk over 4.2 innings in accepting the loss.

Oglethorpe's Kyle Mitchell held Bates to one run on three hits and three walks while striking out six in his start. Justin Thigpen (1.1 innings) and Joseph Marco (2.0 innings) held the Bobcats hitless over the final three innings to preserve the win.

Bates is scheduled to face Middlebury next on March 9, in a doubleheader at a site to be determined.

Game 1 Box Score: Bates 5, Emory 4

Game 2 Box Score: Emory 6, Bates 3

Box Score: Oglethorpe 7, Bates 1