Sports

Big Green too much for baseball Bears

By
Sports Editor
Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Following an 8-6 win over Bryant on Thursday, the baseball team traveled to Dartmouth for a four-game series against the Ivy League leaders. The series began with three close losses for Brown, but the Bears closed out the series with a 12-9 win, in which they came back from an 8-3 deficit.

With eight league games left in the season, Brown’s league record now stands at 8-4, three games behind Dartmouth, which is 11-1 in Ivy League play.

First baseman Pete Greskoff ’11 led the way for Brown in Sunday’s win with a triple and two home runs, bringing his season total to a team-high eight homers. Co-captain Matt Nuzzo ’09, playing in the designated hitter spot, went 3-for-4 — including a three-run homer — and scored two runs.

“After losing the first three and being down big in that last game, we easily could have packed it in, but we did a good job of coming back and keeping the season alive,” Greskoff said.
 

Brown 8, Bryant 6

Bryant got out to a 6-2 lead in the third inning of Thursday’s game, but Andrew Bakowski ’11 and Matt Kimball ’11 kept the Bears (13-15-1, 8-4 Ivy) in the game, each pitching two shutout innings of relief.

Nuzzo hit a two-run homer to make it a one-run game in the bottom of the seventh inning, and the Bears tacked on three more runs in the seventh to secure the 8-6 win. Outfielders Dan Shapiro ’09 and Daniel Rosoff ’12 led Bruno with three hits each, and Rob Papenhause ’09 added three RBI.

Dartmouth 5, Brown 2

In the first game of Saturday’s doubleheader, the Big Green (14-10, 11-1) took a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning, but Brown cut the lead to 2-1 in the top of the third, when Greskoff’s RBI single drove in outfielder Chris Tanabe ’10.

After the rough first inning, starting pitcher Mark Gormley ’11 retired eight consecutive batters until, with two outs in the bottom of the fourth, he surrendered a solo home run, giving Dartmouth a 3-1 lead.

Catcher Matt Colantonio ’11 led off the fifth inning with a double and later came around to score, but the Big Green struck for two more runs in the bottom of the sixth to take a 5-2 lead into the final inning. In the seventh inning, back-to-back Dartmouth errors put runners at the corners with only one out and the heart of the order coming up, but Dartmouth closer Ryan Smith struck out Nuzzo and Greskoff to put the game away.


Dartmouth 5, Brown 2

In Saturday’s second game, the Bears had only one batter reach base in the first four innings, and Dartmouth took a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the fourth on a two-run triple. In the fifth inning, Rosoff’s second double of the game drove in Papenhause to cut the lead to 2-1, but the Big Green answered, expanding the lead to 4-1 by the end of the sixth inning.

They eventually held on for the win, again by a score of 5-2.

“On Saturday, I think we forced the issue a little too much,” Nuzzo said. “We didn’t play terribly, but we had opportunities that we could have capitalized on, and we didn’t cash in on those, and they got everything out of us that they could.”

Dartmouth 14, Brown 9

In the first game of Sunday’s doubleheader, pitcher Matt Boylan ’10 struggled early, as the Big Green took a 5-0 lead at the end of the second inning — but then the Bears’ bats suddenly came to life.

Brown sent 11 batters to the plate in the top of the third, capitalizing on six hits and a Dartmouth error to score seven runs, capped off by a two-run homer by center fielder Steve Daniels ’09, which gave Bruno a 7-5 lead.

But the Bears were unable to maintain the lead. Dartmouth, trailing 9-6 going into the bottom of the sixth, exploded for an eight-run inning to take a 14-9 lead, and Brown failed to produce any runs in the seventh inning, losing its third consecutive game.

Brown 12, Dartmouth 9

In the final game of the series, Nuzzo gave the Bears an early lead with a three-run homer in the first inning, but Dartmouth countered with three runs of its own in the bottom of the inning, and by the end of the third inning, Brown trailed, 8-3.

But the Bears chipped away at the lead, beginning with an RBI single off Ryan Zrenda’s ’11 bat in the top of the fourth. In the next inning, Greskoff laced an RBI triple to right field and later scored on a ground ball, cutting Bruno’s deficit to just 8-6.

Daniels hit an RBI triple in the top of the sixth to make it a one-run game, and in the seventh inning, Greskoff and Shapiro connected for back-to-back homers to give Brown a 9-8 lead.

Meanwhile, Bakowski held the Big Green in check, allowing just one run in three and two-thirds innings of relief. With the score tied, 9-9, heading into the ninth inning, Nuzzo led off with a single, and Greskoff came through again, drilling his second home run of the game over the right field fence to put Brown ahead, 11-9.

“I think I just got a few pitches to hit in that game, and I took advantage of them,” Greskoff said. “We had more clutch hits on Sunday, and that’s really what it came down to.”

After Shapiro reached base with a walk, Tanabe drove a double down the right field line to score Shapiro, giving the Bears an insurance run, and Rob Wilcox ’10 pitched a one-two-three bottom of the ninth, capping off two-and-two-thirds innings of shutout relief.

“The team showed a lot of character and heart, and we still believe in our hearts that we have a shot at this,” Nuzzo said. “All we can do now is control what we do, winning these next eight games and taking it one game at a time.”

The team will host a doubleheader today against Marist, and will then travel to Storrs, Conn. to take on UConn tomorrow, before resuming Ivy League play with a four-game home series against Harvard (8-21, 6-4) this weekend.