WALTHAM, Mass. – Pounding out 17 hits, the Bentley University baseball team won for the ninth time in 11 games and completed a season series sweep of Stonehill College with an 11-7 win in Northeast-10 Conference Northeast Division action Tuesday afternoon at DeFelice Field.
Junior center fielder Max Troiani (Pittsford, N.Y./Pittsford HS), junior third baseman Jake Pierce (East Bridgewater/East Bridgewater HS) and graduate second baseman Mike Samko (Arlington/BB&N) – the Falcons' first three hitters in the lineup – each had three hits and scored a total of seven runs to pace Coach Bob DeFelice's team.
They did most of their damage early as Bentley scored three times in the first, twice in the second and three more in third for an 8-0 lead. Troiani singled and scored in each of those innings, and Pierce also had three singles before the bottom of the third was completed.
Stonehill got on the scoreboard with a single run in the fourth and it remained a comfortable 8-1 lead until the eighth inning.
The Skyhawks erupted for six in the eighth to draw within one. The Stonehill comeback featured a two-run double by senior right fielder Patrick Downey (Cheshire, Conn.), his second and third RBI of the day.
Bentley answered in the bottom of the same frame, putting up its third three-run inning of the game to extend the lead to four. Samko ignited the rally with a one-out triple to right and scored on a single over a drawn-in infield by senior right fielder Brandon Grover (Rocky Hill, Conn./Rocky Hill HS). It was his second RBI of the game and team-leading 37th of the season.
Later in the inning, senior right fielder Gino Fordiani (Sudbury/Lincoln-Sudbury Reg. HS) had a sacrifice fly and junior catcher Christopher Butler (Danvers/BB&N) drove in a run with his third hit of the game.
Junior left hander Lloyd Hill (Milton/Milton HS) earned the win with six innings of three-hit, five-strikeout pitching. He lowered his ERA to 1.91.
With its fourth straight victory, Bentley improved to 18-20 overall, 18-10 since March 11 and 12-6 in the NE10's Northeast Division. Stonehill, which came in with a three-game winning streak, dropped to 19-25 overall and 6-12 in the division.
A three-game home series with St. Michael's College remains for the Falcons on the regular season schedule, beginning on Thursday at 3:30 pm.