WALTHAM, Mass. – Junior lefty Ryan O'Connor (Newburyport/Newburyport HS) pitched his second shutout of the season and senior shortstop Will Brennan (Locust Valley, N.Y./Locust Valley HS) drove in the game's only run as Bentley University made it five straight wins, 1-0 over Pace University in Northeast-10 Conference non-divisional baseball Friday afternoon at DeFelice Field.
The Falcons, a sizzling 10-1 in their last 11 games, improved to 11-8 overall and 7-1 against NE-10 opponents. Pace fell to 5-11 overall and 1-6 in conference games.
It was the third straight outstanding start for O'Connor, who pitched a four-hitter and lowered his season ERA to 1.64. Over the last two weeks, he's 3-0 with a microscopic 0.36 ERA in 25 innings of work. During that stretch, he's struck out 25, averaging one per inning, while giving up just 16 hits and three walks.
Nine of those strikeouts came against Pace, including five in the last three innings, and he allowed only three runners to reach second base.
The only run of the day came in the third inning. With one out, senior left fielder Sean Keady (Norwood/Norwood HS) beat out an infield single, extending his hitting streak to 14 and reaching base for the 29th straight contest, dating back to last season.
After an errant throw on a pickoff attempt allowed Keady to move to second, a two-out double to left center by Brennan made it a 1-0 game.
Pace also received a solid pitching performance with junior righty Tim Deegan (Levittown, N.Y.) limiting the Falcons to just six hits over the first seven innings in his first start of the year. He struck out five and walked one with the only run against him unearned.
Bentley sophomore catcher Bryan Rocha (Rehoboth/Dighton-Rehoboth HS) was the only player in the game to have multiple hits as he had a single and a double in three at bats.
The two teams will conclude their series Saturday with the first pitch at DeFelice Field set for 1 pm.