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Baseball drops two straight coming off UAA championship

By zaronow

Section: Sports

March 28, 2008

the_hoot_3-28-08_page_10_image_0001.jpgWith winter melting away and the sounds of spring starting to come into bloom, it can only one thing – allergy season is back.

Oh, and the baseball team is back on the diamond.

Fresh off their co-UAA Championship run in Florida, the Brandeis Judges returned to their home state only to drop their last two games. The Judges were narrowly edged out by Salem State 3-2 and then committed four errors leading to five unearned runs in their 8-1 loss at the hands of 18th ranked Wheaton College back on Tuesday for their home opener.

Wheaton jumped ahead in the third inning after two straight errors and a hit batsman set the stage for Lyons second baseman Jake Yagjian, who stroked a double down the right field line plating the first two runs. It was the only hit of the inning as the next two runs came off of a wild pitch and another fielding error. Wheaton would add three more runs in the fifth and one more in the sixth for good measure. Pat Nicholson ’11 got his first collegiate RBI in the bottom of the seventh, which proved be the only gasp from the Judges as they fell to 5-4 with their second straight loss.

Tyler Robinson ’08 had an inconsistent outing, going 5.2 innings and surrendering five runs on eight hits, though only three of them were earned. Robinson also had six strikeouts and two hit batsmen, not to mention no help from his defense with the team committing four errors behind him. James Collins ’09, David Packard ’09 and Nicholson each pitched a scoreless frame. Wheaton hurler Brian Hughes kept the Judges quiet, scattering five hits and one run over 6.1 innings. Jared Barnes wrapped it up with 2.2 innings of scoreless ball.

John O’Brion ’10 and Drake Livada ’10 were the bright spots for the Judges on offense, each going 2-4 and accounting for four of Brandeis’s six hits in the game.

The loss comes straight after the Judges dropped a pitcher’s duel at Salem State. John O’Brion’s RBI single in the third inning brought in Chuck Sheehan ’08 and gave Brandeis the 1-0 lead. Salem State pushed back though, working the tying run across in the fifth and then driving Rocco Toppi ’08 off the mound with two runs on two hits and one error. Kyle Ritchie ’10 kept the Vikings off the board for the rest of the game. Drake Livada’s RBI single brought the Judges to within one, but they could not master Salem State pitcher Scott Lynch, who threw a complete game, scattered five hits, struck out five and issued only one walk.

Brandeis returns at home this afternoon as they take on Albertus Magnus before hitting the road on a three game swing starting with UMass-Dartmouth on the 29th, finishing out the month on the 31st against Babson, and beginning April at MIT.

On a positive note, rookie outfielder Tony Deshler ’11 was named UAA Rookie of the Year and was named to the First Team All-UAA along with second baseman John O’Brion. First baseman Nick Gallagher ’09 and catcher Artie Posch ’10 each earned second team honors. Deshler batted .419 in the UAA tournament, starting every game and was second in the UAA in hits and RBI’s. O’Brion powered his way onto the first team, batting .417 with two home runs and finished second in the league with a .750 slugging percentage.the_hoot_3-28-08_page_10_image_0002.jpg

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