NESCAC Champ Baseball Advances in NCAAs with 6-0 Win over Keystone & 6-3 Win over Haverford
After suffering some control issues the day before and facing just four batters before being relieved in Wesleyan's opening NCAA tournament game in Moosic, Pa. during the Mid-Atlantic Regional, Nick Cooney '15 (#21, photo insert lower right) came right back and dominated Keystone with a five-hit, complete-game shutout as Wesleyan averted elimination with a 6-0 victory Thurs., May 15. Wesleyan was to face Haverford in another elimination game Fri., May 16, but bad weather forced games to be postponed until Sat., May 17. When Wesleyan and Haverford squared off the first time since 1924, Wesleyan came away a 6-3 winner. As a result, the Cardinals are among the final four teams in the regional and face host Misericordia at 7:45 p.m. Saturday in another elimination contest. The game will have Livestats and webcast coverage.
Cooney logged his third complete game and second shutout of the season while improving to 6-3 against Keystone. With nine strikeouts in the contest, Cooney raised his season total to 84, breaking the Wesleyan single-season mark of 79 set by Will James, who used 78 innings to accomplish his feat in 2001. Cooney has logged 72.1 innings this year. He has a 3.36 ERA and an opposing batting average of .194. He was recently named second-team all-NESCAC for the second straight season.
Sam Goodwin-Boyd '15 (#9, main photo), a first-team all-NESCAC choice, launched his fifth homer of the season in the 3rd inning, scoring three runs as both Andrew Yin '15, who had reached on a fielder's choice, and Donnie Cimino '15, who walked, were on base at the time Goodwin-Boyd cleared the left center field fence with his liner. That upped his team-leading RBI total this season to 41. Nick Miceli '17 added a timely two-run double to left in the 4th inning to push the Cardinals' advantage to 5-0. Wesleyan added its final run in the 6th after Guy Davidson '15 hit his team-leading 15th double of the year, went to third on a grouod out and scored on Miceli's sacrifice squeeze bunt, giving him three RBI on the afternoon. Davidson and Ellis Schaefer '17 both had two hits on the day as Wesleyan amassed nine in the game.
Defensively, Cimino made two outstanding catches in center field, one on a deep shot to the fence in the 2nd inning and the other a running shoe-top grab in right center with two runners on and two outs. Wesleyan played errorless ball, improving its team fielding percentage to .969.
Against Haverford, Wesleyan jumped out to a 5-0 lead in the top of the 3rd by rapping out six singles. Schaefer, Hoynes and Miceli all singles to begin the frame with Miceil beating out his intended sacrifice bunt to turn it into a hit, loading the bases. With the infield up, Robby Harbison '17 hit a grounder toward first base and the ball went through the legs of the fielder as both Schaefer and Hoynes scored. A throw to third base was high and Miceli continued home while Harbison ended up at second base. Yin then put down a perfect bunt single along the third-base line, making it runners at first and third. Cimino launched a sacrifice fly to right field, upping the edge to 4-0, as Yin went to second on the throw home. Goodwin-Boyd followed with a single to left, plating Yin for the 5-0 advantage. Haverford got three back in the 4th as starting pitcher Jeff Blout '14 aggravated his injury and ran into trouble. Peter Rantz '16 got two outs but allowed a hit and a walk. In came Chris Law '14 (#16, photo insert upper middle), the hero of the Cardinals' NESCAC clinching win at Tufts, and he got the final out of the inning via strikeout, then finished the game in outstanding fashion, yielded just four hits over the final five innings with no runs. He improved his seasonal record to 4-2. Wesleyan added its sixth run in the 7th on another Goodwin-Boyd RBI single, bringing in Yin who had walked and moved to second on a wild pitch. Yin went 3-for-4 in the contest, scoring twice. G-B was 2-for-4 with his two RBI. Miceli also had a pair of safeties. Wesleyan outhit Haverford, 12-8.