North Adams, MA- The visiting Bridgewater State Bears swept the MCLA Trailblazers this afternoon, taking the opener 7-1 before winning the nightcap 1-0. With the sweep, the Bears earned the final slot in the upcoming MASCAC Baseball championships as they improved to 13-19 overall (6-8 MASCAC). MCLA finishes with a mark of 3-23 (1-13 MASCAC).
The Bears will be the sixth seed in this week's playoffs battling third seeded Framingham State on Thursday at 3pm.
The Bears wasted little time jumping on top of MCLA in the opener. They plated a single run in the first and added three more in the second, and one in the third for a 5-0 lead. Jacob Souza led off the first with a single and would come around to score on Ryan Manning's base hit. In the second inning, the Bears used three hits to plate their runs.
Sean Brooks, Billy Mitchell, and Shane Varnadore loaded the bases after all singling. After an RBI groundout and a stolen base put runners at second and third, an infield error allowed both runners to score to make it 4-0 through two innings. Bridgewater would plate another unearned run in the fourth as Bear starting pitcher Andy Sadoski was cruising.
He kept MCLA off the board until the sixth when Rory Slattery plated Chase Preite who had walked. It was the only run the Trailblazers would push across as they wouldn't threaten again. Two more BSU runs in the seventh cushioned their lead to 7-1.
Sadoski went the distance allowing six hits and striking out three. Bridgewater outhit MCLA 12-6 in the opener as Brooks, Mitchell, Varnadore, and Keaghan Austin all had two hits. Slattery paced MCLA with three hits.
Mike Mancivalano took the loss for the Trailblazers.
The nightcap was a pitchers duel between Bridgewater's David Holmes and MCLA's Robert Jutras. Through four innings each pitcher had allowed just one hit. The Bears finally broke through in the fifth inning mounting a two out rally.
Souza reached on an infield error and promptly stole second base. Colin Ryan would knock him home with a solid single to left field and a 1-0 advantage. Jutras would avoid further damage by inducing a flyout.
MCLA had their best opportunity to score off of Holmes in the first inning when Nate Alibozek led off with a single and moved up on a Preite walk with nobody out. Holmes would record three staight outs though and then settle into a groove. He would go on to retire 20 straight Trailblazers until Cody Weaver's bad hop single in the seventh.
Holmes would end the game by getting Jared Gersch on a fly to left. He would finish allowing just the two hits and struck out five in the contest. Bridgewater only mustered three hits on the afternoon against tough luck loser Jutras.
The righty went all seven innings and finished with a pair of strikeouts.