PROVIDENCE, RI – After erupting for 20 runs in a victory at Lehman College on Thursday, the Western Connecticut State University baseball squad plated 21 at Little East Conference opponent Rhode Island College on Saturday afternoon. The Colonials won the opener, 14-10, before being edged in the nightcap, 9-7. WestConn senior Clete LoRusso (New Milford, CT) and junior Kyle MacLean (Southington, CT) combined to rack up 12 hits and 14 RBI's for the matinee.
With the split, the Colonials earned their first league win, moving to 11-19 and 1-11. The Anchormen went to 18-12 and 7-5.
"It was another good day for our bats as playing regularly now seems to have gotten us back on track," said Colonial head coach John Susi following the action. "Bielizna gave a great effort in relief of an injury to earn the Game One win," he added.
The aforementioned junior pitcher George Bielizna (Danbury, CT) came on early to toss 6.2 solid innings, striking out three and allowing just three earned runs. LoRusso paced the visitors with a 4-for-4 showing that included a double, homer and six RBI's.
WestConn got on the board in the top of the first when they plated three runs, highlighted by a two-run single from MacLean.
RIC answered in the bottom of the frame when it scored seven runs and sent 11 batters to the plate to take the 7-3 advantage. The inning was highlighted by back-to-back run scoring hits from sophomore left fielder Josh Silva (Seekonk, MA) and Nate Vigeant.
The Anchormen extended the lead to 8-3 in the bottom of the second when senior designated hitter Frank Pettinato (Cranston, RI) blasted a solo home run.
The Colonials cut into the lead in the top of the fourth when McLean belted a three-run home run to make the score 8-6.
RIC answered in the bottom of the third when an RBI single from Vigeant gave the Anchormen the 9-6 advantage.
The Colonials regained the lead in the top of the fourth when they tallied four runs, including a three-run home run from LoRusso for the 10-9 lead. They added to the lead in the top of the fifth when they pushed across four runs, including a two-run single from LoRusso, for the 14-9 advantage en route to the win.
In Game Two, WestConn got on the board in the top of the fourth with a pair of RBI singles from MacLean and sophomore third baseman Zach Piroh (Stratford, CT) knotted the game at 2-2.
The Anchormen regained the lead in the bottom of the frame when they plated a pair of runs, including an RBI single from junior Tyler Calabro (Cumberland, RI), to take the 4-2 advantage.
The Colonials closed the gap to 4-3 on an RBI single from Piroh in the top of the sixth.
RIC tacked on three more runs in the bottom of the sixth, including an RBI single from junior designated hitter Tyler Walsh (Cumberland, RI), to push the lead to 7-3.
The Colonials trimmed the lead to 7-5 in the top of the seventh after a two-run home from Sagar.
RIC then added to the lead in the bottom of the seventh as the Anchormen capitalized on a miscue from the Colonials to make the score 9-5.
MacLean responded, belting a two-run home run in the top of the ninth to round the scoring out at 9-7.
MacLean finished 4-for-4 with three runs scored and three RBI's for WCSU, while Piroh had three hits and a pair of RBI's in the loss.
WestConn returns to action on Monday against visiting non-league foe New Rochelle.