Cards Fall to Defending NESCAC & NCAA Champ Trinity and Tufts in NESCAC Tourney to End Season
Falling behind defending NESCAC and NCAA Division III champ Trinity, 6-0, after two innings of play, the Cardinals rallied to get within a pair at 6-4 in the top of the 6th, but the Bantams pulled away for a 13-6 victory in the first round of the NESCAC tournament Fri., May 8. The loss put Wesleyan in an elimination game in Pittsfield, Mass. Sat., May 9 vs. Tufts. Tufts had lost to Williams, 18-5, in the other first-round game. Though Wesleyan overcame an early 5-2 deficit to grab an 8-5 lead over the Jumbos, it didn't last as Tufts rallied for a 15-10 win, ending the Cardinals' NESCAC tournament run.
After yielding six runs early on to Trinity, pitcher Dusty Mones '09 shut the Bantams down for three innings as the Cardinals mounted a comeback. Garrett Lamborn '09 (#28, main photo) had a big two-run single during a three-run 4th inning and the Cardinals added a single run in the 6th as Lamborn scored on Brandyn Cooper's '12 RBI hit.
Trinity opened up the offense again in the bottom of the 6th, racking up five more runs to push out to an 11-4 edge. Lamborn and Phil Rosenblum '12 both lashed an RBI double in the 7th to make it an 11-6 game. Rosenblum went 3-for-5 in the contest. Lamborn was 2-for-3 with three RBI and three runs. Cooper went 2-for-3 as the third Cardinal with a multiple-hit game.
Trinity closed out the scoring with two in the bottom of the 7th. James Hounsell '10 took the mound for the Cards in the middle of the 7th and got the final four outs, two by strikeout, in a brief but productive relief appearance.
Despite 16 hits against Tufts, Wesleyan could not silence the Jumbos' bats as 10 runs between the 6th and 7th innings for Tufts turned the outcome its way. Wesleyan trailed 5-3 entering the 6th but got five runs for an 8-5 lead. Brice Kelly '10 (#7, photo insert upper right) connected for a two-run double while Lamborn added a two-run homer, his fifth of the season to tie for the team lead. Kelly finished the game 3-for-4 with four RBI while Lamborn had another 2-for-3 effort with two RBI. Also with three hits in the game was Julian Sonnenfeld '11 while Jon Sheehan '11 had a pair. Drew Dominiguez '09 added his seasonal team-record 60th hit in his last career at-bat. He finished second all-time in hits at Wesleyan with 174.
A six-run bottom of the 6th for Tufts made it 11-8 and another four in the 7th pushed the lead to 15-8. Wesleyan added single runs in the 8th and 9th for the final margin.
Wesleyan posted a winning mark with a 19-16 final record and qualified for its third NESCAC tournament in the last eight seasons.