BEVERLY, Mass. – The Endicott baseball team split a Friday night doubleheader (W 5-0, L 1-2) with CCC opponent Wentworth to move their 2014 record to 19-9 (10-2 CCC). The Gulls return to their non-conference schedule starting with a home doubleheader against NAC foe Husson on Saturday, April 19th starting at 12:00 pm.
The Leopards (14-15, 7-9 CCC) wrapped up regular season play against the conference and currently own a spot in the CCC Tournament with three non-conference games left on the schedule. Wentworth travels to MASCAC opponent Bridgewater State on Wednesday, April 23rd for a nine-inning game starting at 3:30 pm.
Game One: Endicott 5, Wentworth 0
Sophomore righty JJ Branch (Milford, Mass.) pitched a complete-game shutout, allowing just three hits while not allowing a runner to reach second base. Branch struck out three batters and saw his spring record improve to 4-1, including three straight conference victories.
All five of Endicott's runs came on RBI hits including a two-RBI single down the right field line by sophomore catcher Josh Drew (Intervale, N.H.) to make it a 3-0 game in the bottom of the fourth. In the previous inning, the Gulls took a 1-0 lead after sophomore right fielder Steve Morganelli (Milford, Mass.) singled, stole second, reached third on a sacrifice bunt, and scored on a groundout to first by Matthew Paola (Middlebury, Conn.).
Endicott tacked on runs later in the game on a RBI single from junior second baseman Harry Oringer (Dartmouth, Mass.) in the fifth and a line drive to the right centerfield gap by senior EJ Martinez (Brooklyn, N.Y.) that scored Tad Gold (Martha's Vineyard, Mass.) for the second time in the game.
Wentworth senior shortstop Jon Spitz (Hanover, Mass.) had a 2-for-3 day at the plate and in the process became just the third player in Leopards baseball history to record 150 career hits. Spitz hit singles through the infield in both the fourth and sixth innings.
On the hill for the Leopards, senior pitcher Ben Lewis (Middletown, R.I.) took the loss by going six innings and allowing five earned runs on eight hits and a walk. Lewis struck out four batters but dropped his 2014 record down to 2-4.
Game Two: Endicott 1, Wentworth 2
Wentworth junior catcher Jake Mailman (Medway, Mass.) sent a towering fly over the right field wall in the top of the fourth, a solo homerun, for his second RBI of the game to give the Leopards a 2-0 lead. Endicott responded in the bottom half of the inning as sophomore infielder Cody Hall (Rutland, Mass.) singled home Martinez to make it a 2-1 game, but the combined efforts of Wentworth pitchers Aaron Denis (Dover, N.H.) and Zach Bernier (North Dartmouth, Mass.) kept the Blue and Green off the scoreboard the rest of the game.
Denis (5-2) earned the win going 5 1/3 innings, scattering eight hits and walking one while allowing the one earned run. Bernier came on to earn his first collegiate save, stranding the game-tying run in the bottom of the sixth and going 1-2-3 in the bottom of the seventh to help Wentworth earn the split.
Mailman reached base on all four trips the plate, going 2-for-2 with two intentional walks while driving in two in a RBI single in the first and his solo blast in the fourth. Leopards junior Anthony Matera (Trumbull, Conn.) had three hits in the win and scored Wentworth's run in the top of the first.
Two of Oringer's three hits in game two were for extra bases, a triple in the third that ended in a rundown out as Oringer attempted the inside-the-park homerun and a leadoff double down the left field line in the fifth. Oringer would reach third base in the fifth inning with just one out but Denis escaped the jam by forcing a lineout and an infield popup.