MANCHESTER, N.H. – Four different members of the Merrimack College baseball program posted multi-hit efforts including a four-hit day for graduate student Tyler Lyne that pushed the fifth-year outfielder past the 200-hit milestone as the third-seeded Warriors outlasted top-seeded and No. 20 Le Moyne, 9-6, on Thursday to reach the winners bracket of the 2018 Northeast-10 Conference Championship. The Navy and Gold will play the victor of Southern New Hampshire vs. New Haven tomorrow at 2 p.m. from the SNHU Baseball Field with a chance to reach the NE10 Final.
Video: Amidon/Porricelli Comments
Score: Merrimack 9, #20 Le Moyne 6
Records: Merrimack (28-18) | #20 Le Moyne (33-14-1)
Location: SNHU Baseball Field | Manchester, N.H.
Championship Weekend (double elimination)
Thursday, May 10
Game 5: (3NE) Merrimack def. (1SW) Le Moyne – 9-6
Game 6: (2SW) New Haven vs. (1NE) Southern New Hampshire – 3 p.m.
Friday, May 11
Game 7: (1SW) Le Moyne vs. Game 6 loser – 11 a.m. Live Stats | Video
Game 8: (3NE) Merrimack vs. Game 6 winner – 2 p.m. Live Stats | Video
Game 9: Game 7 winner vs. Game 8 loser – 5 p.m. Live Stats | Video
Saturday, May 12
Game 10: Game 9 winner vs. Game 8 winner – 1 p.m.
Game 11: If necessary – 35 minutes following completion of Game 10
- The first four hitters put forth productive at-bats to deliver a pair of runs in the top of the first. Sophomore Joey Porricelli and Lyne hit singles and stole bases to put runners in scoring position, and junior Matthew Ronai drove in the former with a sacrifice fly. Senior Matt Nicholson followed with a RBI double to the center-field wall that made it a 2-0 game
- Le Moyne was able to move in front through three frames, scoring once in the first and twice in the third. The Dolphins went ahead on a two-out single, but senior Anthony Lupi stranded the bases loaded to limit to scoring after that. The Dover, N.H. native also kept Le Moyne off the board in the second inning despite allowing the first two baserunners to reach
- Merrimack immediately got back on top, scoring three runs in the fourth. They all came with two outs as senior Ricky Smith led off with a HBP, but remained at second after a sacrifice bunt and a strikeout. Porricelli knocked him in with a double down the left-field line, and then advanced to third on a base hit from Lyne. The latter swiped his third base of the day to put runners in scoring position, and both came home on a line-drive single off the bat of Ronai
- The back-and-forth action continued in the bottom half. Le Moyne chased Lupi, scoring twice to tie the game. Junior Daniel Amidon took over out of the bullpen, retiring two of the three batters he faced to leave the bases loaded. Entering the top of the fifth, the game sat tied at 5-5
- In the top of the sixth, Lyne delivered his fourth base knock to put Merrimack back ahead, 6-5. The center fielder hit a two-out double over the head of Le Moyne’s left fielder to plate Porricelli
- Amidon settled into his outing, striking out six batters over his first 2.2 innings of work. The Andover, Mass. native walked the bases loaded with one out in the sixth, but escaped the jam with a pop out and an inning-ending punch out
- In the next inning, Amidon faced a runners on second and third situation with one out. Porricelli picked up his hurler with a spectacular diving putout to keep the lead runner standing on third, and Amidon followed with another K to keep the Dolphins off the board through seven frames
- Courtesy of a passed ball in the eighth as well as a bases-loaded walk followed by a sacrifice fly in the ninth, the Warriors took a 9-5 advantage into the bottom of the ninth.
- Amidon started the ninth, relented one run before giving way to senior PJ Browne with two outs. Tuesday’s starter who threw seven innings just 48 hours prior needed five pitches to force a popup to the sophomore Thomas Joyce at first and end the game
- WP: Amidon (4-2) | LP: Murphy (7-3) | S: Browne (2)
- Amidon’s Final Line (W): 5.1 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 8 K, 7 BB
- Lyne led all players with four hits including one of Merrimack’s three doubles on the day. The center fielder also swiped three bases to lead all players, his second game of the season with at least three steals
- Nicholson posted a three-hit effort while junior Anthony Garbarino joined Porricelli and Ronai with two-hit performances
- Porricelli and Lyne combined to score five of Merrimack’s nine runs on the day. Ronai drove in a game-high three runs from the cleanup spot
- Amidon put forth a career performance on the hill, striking out a career-high eight batters to increase on his career high in wins (4). The southpaw threw 107 pitches, the second most of his season, and lowered his season ERA to 4.06
- Browne’s save marked the second of his senior year and second of his career
Notes and Notables:
- After hitting singles in each of his first three at-bats, Lyne became just the fifth player in program history to record 200 career hits. The Agawam, Mass. native reached the milestone by totaling a career-best and NE10-leading 73 base knocks through 45 games
- With Lyne’s first-inning single, he became just the fourth Warrior in school history and first in 22 years to compile a 70-hit season. He now is tied for the second most hits in a season, needing four more to tie the program record
- One more on Ty: With three steals, Lyne became just the second player in school history with 30 stolen bases in a season and the first since George Evangelista’s program-record 37 steals in 1989
- The program record its 27th win in the NE10 Championship, which ranks second among NE10 member institutions
- The Warriors are now 3-2 this season against nationally ranked programs and 2-1 against Le Moyne
The Navy and Gold will await the winner of Thursday’s other game from the first day of NE10 Championship Weekend, pitting SNHU against New Haven. Tomorrow’s contest will start at approximately 2 p.m., with the winner reaching Saturday’s NE10 Final. The loser will play another game on Friday night to determine the other NE10 finalist.