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Red-hot Endicott comes back to tip baseball, 4-3

BEVERLY, Mass. -- Trailing 3-0 for much of the game, Endicott scored three times in the eighth inning and then loaded the bases in the bottom of the ninth before Colin Sitarz took a four-pitch walk to force in the winning run, as the Gulls defeated Bates 4-3 on Monday afternoon.

Endicott (28-11) finished its regular season with nine straight wins and 18 wins in its last 21 games, dating back to April 6th. Bates (15-15) defeated the Gulls 5-4 at home on April 4.

Bates senior Ryan Sonberg (Windsor, Conn.) had put the Bobcats on top in the third with a sacrifice fly that scored sophomore Nate Pajka (Douglas, Mass.), who had a 3-for-4 day to lead the Bobcats offense.

Bates tacked on two more runs in the fourth, when Hyde and junior Kevin Davis (North Andover, Mass.) led off with back to back doubles. Davis eventually came around to score on a wild pitch by JJ Branch, who was charged with three earned runs and allowed five hits over three and a third innings.

Robbie Goldstick came across with the winning run after battling through a tough at-bat to draw a leadoff walk.

Endicott freshman Corbin Hyde (Lewiston, Maine) threw a scoreless eighth for the Gulls and had the unique opportunity of pitching against his older brother, Bates sophomore Mekae Hyde (Lewiston, Maine), who led off the inning and walked.

The Gulls were held to just four hits and no runs through seven and two-thirds innings, but used a two-out, eighth-inning rally to tie the score.

Harry Oringer hit a ringing single to center, and the Gulls loaded the bases on two more walks before Matt Paola reached on an infield single to shortstop and Oringer scored to get the Gulls on the board.

Tad Gold tied the game for the Gulls with a two-run single through the left side that scored Sitarz and Brett Holmgren.

Endicott reliever Kevin Dupras earned the win, improving to 2-1 on the season. Dupras pitched the top of the ninth and, despite giving up back-to-back lead-off singles, worked out of a jam, striking out Sonberg and getting sophomore Alex Parker (Lewiston, Maine) to ground out to short.

Tyler Hill helped keep the game close, throwing 3.2 innings of relief, allowing just one hit and collecting two strikeouts.

First-year righthander Samuel Warren (Norfolk, Va.) was saddled with the loss for the Bobcats, surrendering one run on four walks and two hits in 0.2 innings.

The Bobcats got a quality start from junior Chris Fusco (Annapolis, Md.), who went 6.2 shutout innings and allowed four hits, with one walk and one strikeout. He made way for sophomore Sam Maliska (Palo Alto, Calif.), who was charged with three runs on a hit and two walks.

Bates will continue its non-conference schedule on Wednesday afternoon when it hosts the top-ranked team in New England, University of Southern Maine, at 4pm.