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NESCAC Tournament
Tufts 9    Amherst 4

At Williamstown, MA
Saturday, May 12, 2007

Game Box Score

The Tufts University baseball team played itself back into contention for the 2007 NESCAC championship on Saturday. After Tufts lost its opening game to Amherst, 8-7, on Friday, the Jumbos rebounded today with an 11-6 win over Bowdoin in the morning to eliminate the Polar Bears, followed by a 9-4 victory against the Lord Jeffs in the afternoon.

Tufts will now play host Williams College tomorrow for the championship. The Jumbos must defeat the Ephs twice to take the title. The first game will start at 10:00 am, followed if necessary by a winner-takes-all game. Amherst's season is over with a 20-14 record.

The Jumbos scored five runs in the sixth inning to break open the game against Amherst. They led 1-0 when freshman DH Corey Pontes (Milton, MA) led off the third and scored on a single by senior catcher Chris Decembrele (Walpole, MA). Pontes then hit a two-run home run in the fifth for a 3-0 Jumbo lead. Amherst got one back in the bottom of the fifth when Tom Scott (Randolph, NJ) singled to right center and Josh Card (North Adams, MA) sent an RBI-double to the gap for his second hit of the game.

In the sixth, the first six Tufts hitter reached base to knock Amherst starter Ryan Platzbecker (Westlake, OH) out of the game. The big blow was a bases-loaded triple by sophomore Kevin Casey (Milford, MA) that gave Tufts a 6-1 lead. He would later score on a single by Pontes, who finished the day 4 for 5 with three RBIs and two runs scored.

Armed with a big lead, Tufts junior Jason Protano (Milford, MA) held off the Lord Jeffs through the eighth. Lord Jeffs singles by Michael Neff (New York, NY) and Josh Card (North Adams, MA), along with a sacrifice fly by Brendan Powers (Walpole, MA), in the seventh made the score 8-4 Tufts. A triple by Decembrele and a single by Brian Casey (Milford, MA) brought home the ninth Tufts run, while Card had a sacrifice fly for a run in the bottom of the ninth for the Lord Jeffs.

The Jumbos, who will play for the NESCAC championship for the second straight season, got two hits apiece from Brian Casey, Kevin Casey and Decembrele, and finished with 11 total. Protano allowed nine hits and four runs.

Card (3 for 4, three RBIs), Tom Scott (2 for 3, two runs) and Powers (2 for 1, one RBI) led Amherst offensively.