Building a 9-1 lead in the top of the 5th inning, Wesleyan looked well on its way toward a valuable NESCAC West victory at divisional leader Amgerst Fri., April 27 in the first game of a three-game league series. But the Lord Jeffs rallied for 10 runs over their next three at-bats to take an 11-9 lead in the bottom of the 7th and held the Cardinals scoreless over the last four frames to take the two-run decision. Wesleyan's chance of securing a NESCAC playoff spot rests on the outcome of the double-header the team's will play in Middletown Sat., April 28. The first game will feature a webcast while both contests will have LiveStats.
Donnie Cimino '15 (#11, photo insert top middle) lashed a pair of hits and drove in three runs. His two-run single in the 2nd helped Wesleyan to an early 4-1 lead after Alex Meadow '12 had knocked in a run with an infield single, his 179th career hit. He stands one hit shy of tying for second on the all-time Wesleyan list and 10 short of the program record. Joe Giaimo '11 had singled in his 47th run of the season in the 1st inning. Aftrer Cimino picked up his third RBI of the game in the 4th, Andrew Yin '15 (#6, main photo) picked up a key two-run single in the 5th to highlight a four-run outburst for a 9-1 lead.
Amherst got to Cardinal starter Mike Barsotti '12 for three runs in the bottom of the 5th to narrow the gap to 9-4. Another four runs in the 6th chased Barsotti from the mound and left the score 9-8. Chruis Law '14 came in to get the final out of the frame but was touched for three runs in the 7th and took the loss, his first of the year against four wins this season. Two of the three runs he allowed were unearned.
Wesleyan picked up nine hits in the contest but the Lord Jeffs were good for 12 and came away with the triumph despite five errors as only three Wesleyan runs were earned.
Wesleyan can clinch the top spot in the NESCAC West by taking both game of the twin-bill April 28, giving both Wesleyan and Amherst an 8-4 league mark. Anything short of a sweep puts the Cardinals' hope of a playoff spot in jeopardy. Without two wins Saturday, Wesleyan will have to wait for the results of the Williams-Hamilton series over the weekend to see if it has secured the #2 seed in the West.