HARWICH, Mass. – The No. 3 seed, St. John Fisher College, knocked the No. 7 seed, Worcester State University, out of the NCAA Division III New England regional baseball tournament as the Cardinals collected 14 runs on 12 hits and one Lancer error Friday afternoon at Whitehouse Field.
St. John Fisher came out to a 4-0 lead in the first three innings of play. They scored one unearned run in the 1st inning and another in the 2nd when Malcom Kelsey (Piscataway, N.J.) hit a shot over the left field fence. The Cardinals added two more in the top of the 3rd when Ryan Fahy (Herkimer, N.Y.) hit a two-run double to centerfield, plating Jack Trotman (East Amherst, N.Y.) and Allen Murphy (Richburg, N.Y.).
Worcester State's bats came alive in the bottom of the 3rd when they knotted the score at 4-4, scoring four runs on five hits. The Lancers saw four consecutive singles from Adam Barry (Auburn, Mass.), Jake Ryan (Northbridge, Mass.), Mike Ferrara (Easton, Mass.), and Kevin Larkin (Rocky Hill, Conn.) which brought in one run. Next up, Seth Leslie (Phillipston, Mass.) scored Ryan on a sacrifice fly, and then rookie Chadd Richardson (Bristol, Conn.) wrapped up the runs with a two-run single to right center.
St. John Fisher quickly took back the lead, scoring three runs on a sacrifice fly and a two-RBI double from Trotman. Worcester State chipped away at the Cardinal's lead in the reverse side as Larkin sent Brian Bonacquisti (Pittsfield, Mass.) home for the 7-5 score.
The Cardinals added another run in the top of the 5th on a homer from Evan Ryan (Olean, N.Y.), and then ran away with the lead in the top of the 6th as they scored four runs on four hits and one Lancer error.
Worcester State tallied another run in the bottom of the 7th to cut the deficit to five. However, the Cardinals added another two runs in the top of the 9th to seal the 14-7 victory.
Justin Graham (Webster, N.Y.) led the Cardinal's offense as he went 3-for-5 with two RBI. Five Lancers registered two hits in the loss, as Leslie and Richardson led the team with two RBI apiece.
On the hill, St. John Fisher's Dillan Wilkinson (Liverpool, N.Y.) earned the win in 3.2 innings pitched, allowing two runs on four hits. Loukas Brigham (Rochester, N.H.) closed out the game in 2.1 innings pitched and only allowed one Lancer hit.
Worcester State's starting pitcher, Luke Brennan (Worcester, Mass.) suffered the loss in 3.1 innings pitched, allowing seven runs (one unearned) on three hits.
The Lancers wrap up the 2017 campaign with an overall record of 20-22, while St. John Fisher (31-11) advances to the next game of the NCAA Division III New England baseball tournament, to be played tomorrow in Harwich.