The baseball team dropped its weekend series to Dartmouth, dominating game two 13-6 but coming up empty in close losses in games one and three.
Strong starting pitching and a late-game offensive outburst fueled Bruno’s Saturday afternoon victory, but early offensive struggles doomed Brown in its pair of two-run losses. Joe Lomuscio ’21, hitting out of the lead-off spot in all three games, was a highlight for Bruno during the series. He finished the weekend with eight hits and five RBI, leading the Bears in both categories.
The Bears (9-20, 6-6 Ivy) started off strong in the series opener, taking an early 2-0 lead on RBI singles from Rich Ciufo ’20 and Garett Delano ’20, with Delano pitching four scoreless innings to begin the contest. The game started to unravel for Bruno in the fifth, when a triple by Matt Feinstein brought in two runs for the Big Green (11-18, 5-7) and an RBI single from Nate Ostmo gave Dartmouth the lead.
Brown evened up the game when a sacrifice fly by Delano brought Willy Homza ’19 home. But the Big Green battered Bears reliever Charlie Beilenson ’22, hitting two home runs off of the freshman pitcher and scoring three. Right fielder Calvin Farris ’20 attempted to start a rally in the eighth with a solo home run, but the Bears fell short, dropping the series opener 6-4.
“We fought well at the end of the games,” Farris said. “We did a really good job of staying in games with our pitching staff.”
In the second leg of Saturday’s doubleheader, Brown again jumped out to an early 2-0 advantage. This time, an RBI single from Parke Phillips ’20 and a home run from Lomuscio put Bruno ahead. Collin Garner ’21 pitched a solid outing, allowing just three runs — including two earned — over six innings pitched. Thanks to another home run from Farris, Garner exited the game with a 4-3 lead.
Brown’s offense caught fire toward the end of the contest, as the Bears put nine additional runs on the board in a three-inning span. Homza scored two on a sixth-inning single, and Lomuscio was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded in the seventh. Bruno’s bats exploded in the eighth with a two-RBI single from Ciufo, a wild pitch bringing in Delano for a run, an RBI double from Cameron Deere ’20 and finally a two-run homer from Lomuscio. Despite two late home runs from Dartmouth, Brown captured a 13-6 victory.
In the series finale, Dartmouth’s freshman pitcher Justin Murray turned in a stellar performance to help the Big Green pick up a 6-0 lead. Brown notched just one hit in the first five innings, a single in the third from Lomuscio. Meanwhile, Bears starter Will Tomlinson ’20 let up five runs in three innings of work, and Ostmo hit a solo home run off reliever Ryan Kuntz ’22.
“We just started off a little bit slow, because when guys were putting the ball in play it wasn’t falling,” Farris said. “First time through the order, (Murray) got ahead of us in terms of throwing strikes. He just threw well today, … that was kind of the difference in the game.”
But Brown battled back, with a two-run double from Delano drawing the team within four. In the eighth inning, designated hitter Phillips launched a two-run home run to left field to cut the deficit to two. Dartmouth’s Ubaldo Lopez hit a monstrous home run in the top of the ninth, but Lomuscio answered with an RBI single. Farris drew a walk for the chance of a winning run with one out, but both Homza and Phillips faltered in their chances to earn Brown the walk-off victory. Bruno fell 7-5, dropping its Ivy League record to 6-6.
Lomuscio applauded his team’s resilience despite the failed comeback effort. “It’s easy to quit when you’re down 5-0, but we showed we can come back against anyone,” he said.
Even with the series loss, Brown has won four of its last seven games. “We’re starting to hit our stride a little bit,” said Head Coach Grant Achilles. “I like where things sit right now. Obviously we’d like to be in a better situation record-wise in the league, but I think with the next three weekends we’re really positioned well to take care of business on our end.”
Next up for Brown is a road series against Columbia, who leads the Ivy League with a 9-3 conference record. The following weekend, the Bears will travel to Princeton to take on the Tigers, who hold a 4-8 record in the Ancient Eight.