PROVIDENCE, RI – There have been plenty of late-inning heroics at the Scotts Miracle-Gro Athletics Complex this weekend. Unfortunately, they haven't come from the Johnson & Wales University baseball team. Visiting Eastern Connecticut State University scored a pair of runs in the eighth inning for the 5-4 victory on Sunday.
Eastern Connecticut State: 7-3
Johnson & Wales: 4-4
Dave Matthews (JWU): 1-4, 1 R, 1 RBI
Rob Ballinger (JWU): 3-5, 1 R, 1 RBI
Cory Baldwin (ECSU): 2-4, 2 R
Timely hitting and an ECSU error allowed the Wildcats to score a trio of runs in the third inning. Rob Ballinger (South Kingston, RI) looped a double down the left field line to score Lou Umberto (Cranston, RI). Ballinger came around to score on a single by right fielder Dave Matthews (Newtown, Conn.). A throwing error with two outs allowed Matthews to score all the way from first base.
Eastern Connecticut State scored runs in the first and second innings off JWU starter Keith Grant (East Providence, RI). He settled down and worked out of several jams before surrendering the tying run in the seventh. Grant gave up three runs on eight hits with five strikeouts and three walks.
Two free passes allowed the Warriors to get the lead. JWU reliever Kyle Cutler (East Hampton, Conn.) walked John Mesagno to load the bases then Tom Doran (West Warrick, RI) issued another walk to score Christian Budzik. An Alex Parkos sacrifice fly plated Cory Baldwin with the eventual winning run.
The Wildcats play their fourth game in a row when they host Wentworth on Monday at 3:30 p.m.