NORTHBOROUGH, Mass. – The Merrimack College baseball program saw junior Thomas Joyce force extra innings via a solo home run in the top of the eight Friday night against No. 9 Southern New Hampshire, but the nationally ranked Penmen prevailed in the bottom of the 11th, 6-5, from the New England Baseball Complex in Northborough, Mass. The two NE10 rivals will meet for more non-conference action at the NEBC on Sunday with a doubleheader beginning at 2 p.m.
Score (11 innings): #9 SNHU 6, Merrimack 5
Records: Merrimack (0-4) | #9 SNHU (7-2)
Location: New England Baseball Complex | Northborough, Mass.
- The Penmen scored first on a first-and-third play in the bottom of the second inning. Merrimack responded by taking a lead in the top of the fourth via a run-scoring base knock for freshman Kurtis Stadnicki and a sacrifice fly from fellow rookie Michael Golankiewicz. Sophomore Vin Zappulla record two strikeouts in the bottom half to keep Merrimack in front
- The Penmen scored once in the bottom of the fifth to tie the game, but Merrimack answered back in the top of the seventh. Consecutive singles from senior Anthony Garbarino and sophomore Michael Jamele put two runners on for junior Joey Porricelli, who plated both with a double into left field to make it a 4-2 game. Porricelli advanced to third on an error by the third baseman, but was stranded there
- The Penmen responded with a three-run bottom half, aided by a fielding error by the Warriors. SNHU’s first three batters in the inning came around to score. Senior Cam Monagle relieved Zappulla in the frame, retiring the first two batters he faced
- Joyce led off the top of the eight with a solo shot over the right-field fence, the first round-tripper of the season for Merrimack. Stadnicki followed with a single and reached second on a sacrifice bunt, and did not move any further
- Monagle tossed three innings of scoreless relief, but was replaced by junior Dylan Stevens in the bottom of the 10th. Stevens escaped a bases-loaded jam to bring on the 11th frame, but Merrimack was held scoreless in the top half and SNHU pushed one run across in the bottom to end the contest
- WP: Welch (1-0) | LP: Stevens (0-1)
- Joyce belted the seventh homer of his career, the most among any active Warrior
- Four different Warriors posted multi-hit efforts, while Joyce, Porricelli and senior Matthew Ronai each record extra-base hits
- Monagle’s three-inning outing was his longest since 2017, which saw the right lead the NE10 in ERA
- Zappulla’s final line (ND): 6.1 IP, 5 H, 5 R, 3 ER, 1 BB, 3 K
Merrimack returns to the NEBC on Sunday, where the Warriors and Penmen will play in a doubleheader beginning at 2 p.m. in Northborough, Mass. The second game of twinbill will begin at approximately 5 p.m.