Begnoche and Geary go deep, Elderton and Nelson knock four hits in victory at Norwich
NORTHFIELD, Vt. - The Saint Michael's College baseball team knocked six extra-base hits, including two home runs, while junior Andrew Kelley (Lincoln, N.H./Lin-Wood) struck out 10 in six innings of a 15-4 victory against Norwich University at Garrity Field on Thursday. The Purple Knights improved to 9-20, while the Cadets are 4-29.
Freshman Nicky Elderton (Shelburne, Vt./Rice Memorial) was 4-for-5 with three runs while coming within a home run of the cycle for Saint Michael's, and sophomore Nick Nelson (Spofford, N.H./Keene) had a 4-for-6 performance with three RBIs, two runs and a double. Senior Bryan Geary (Milton, Vt./Milton/Skidmore) and junior Jacob Begnoche (Essex Junction, Vt./Essex) both blasted their first collegiate home runs, with Geary finishing with two hits, three runs and four RBIs, while Begnoche had two hits, two runs and three RBIs. Kelley nabbed the win, coming within one strikeout of his career high, allowing one run during his six-inning outing.
Sophomore Tyler Wild (Quaker Hill, Conn./Saint Bernard School) was 3-for-5 with three runs and a double, and classmate Chris Puliafico (Sharon, Mass./Sharon) went 2-for-2 with two RBIs in a reserve role. Seniors Chris Hoey (Huntington, N.Y./Saint Anthony's) and Jesse Sullivan (Saugus, Mass./Pingree School) combined to toss the final three innings, with Hoey striking out two in two frames, and Sullivan pitching a perfect ninth inning.
Senior Corey Shearer (Montague, Mass./Turners Falls) was 2-for-5 with a run, an RBI and a double for Norwich, while sophomore Devin Cilley (Tunbridge, Vt./South Royalton) took the loss, allowing six earned runs in 6.2 innings. He struck out four.
The Purple Knights led 4-0 by the third inning and 8-1 into the bottom of the seventh. Begnoche and Geary swatted two-run homers in the second and third frames, respectively, before the Cadets got on the board in the third. A Nelson two-out RBI single for the visitors extended the lead in the fifth, and the teams traded three-run showings in the seventh.
Elderton, Nelson and Begnoche roped three consecutive run-scoring hits in the top half of the seventh to make it 8-1 before Shearer knocked an RBI double in the home portion, followed immediately by junior Jonathan Philbrook's (Rochester, Mass./Old Colony) two-run single.
In an 8-4 game, the visitors put the game away with seven runs on eight hits in the ninth. A one point, five straight Purple Knights singled, with Geary and Puliafico each providing two-run knocks in the inning. Nelson and sophomore Alec Tice (Chelmsford, Mass./Chelmsford) added RBI singles.
Saint Michael's begins a three-game Northeast-10 Conference Northeast Division set at the University of Massachusetts at Lowell tomorrow at 7 p.m.