Baseball Drops Game One At Wesleyan

April 6, 2012

Ben Hoynes highlighted a four-run first inning for Wesleyan with a three-run double and Mike Barsotti logged his second straight complete game as Wesleyan hung on to defeat visiting Middlebury, 5-4, in the first game of their three-game NESCAC West series here this afternoon.  The squads resume battle Saturday, April 7 with a double-header.

Wesleyan moved out to an early 4-0 advantage by batting around in the first inning despite a smart defensive effort by Middlebury. Kyle Weiss started off with a slashing double to left field but he was tossed out going to third base on a heads-up play by pitcher Michael Joseph on a bunt by Cardinal Alex Meadow. Singles by Donnie Cimino and Joe Giaimo for the RBI plated Meadow for a 1-0 lead. Chris Bonti was hit by a pitch to load the bases, but Joseph fanned senior David Skura for the second out. Hoynes then smacked a double into left to clear the bases and make it a 4-0 game.

In the fifth inning, Middlebury got its first run on an RBI single by junior Tom Driscoll, who had also doubled to lead off the game. He knocked in senior Matt Wassel, who opened the frame with a hit and moved to second on a sacrifice bunt. Barsotti worked out of further trouble by getting the final out on a grounder to third with runners at the corners.

Wesleyan got what proved to be an all-important run in the bottom of the fifth when Weiss singled to left and moved to second on a throwing error on the play. This time, the sacrifice was successful by Meadow, moving Weiss to third and a grounder to the right side by Cimino was good enough for an RBI and a 5-1 margin.

The Panthers narrowed the gap to a lone run with three in the sixth by lashing four of their 11 hits off Barsotti including a deep triple to right centerfield by rookie Dylan Sinnickson to bring in the final run. Earlier, a run scored when the ball came out of Barsotti's hand on a fake pickoff try with runners at first and third, and senior Tyler Wark brought in a run with a single to right. Again, Barsotti got out of further trouble with a groundout to strand Sinnickson at third.

Middlebury got a runner into scoring position in both the seventh and eighth inning, including runners at second and third in the eighth, but Barsotti got the last out by strikeout. In the ninth, Barsotti retired the Panthers one-two-three on a soft liner and two groundouts. He finished the game with five strikeouts and one walk.  Just as effective was Joseph for Middlebury as he allowed nine hits with five K’s and no walks in going the distance, the first complete game this season for the Panthers. Wesleyan's unearned run in the fifth was the difference in the game.

While Sinnickson and Driscoll both had two hits for Middlebury, Panther senior Zach Roeder was the only player with three hits in the contest, going 3-5 with a run scored. Weiss and Hoynes had two hits each for the Cardinals.