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Eastern Connecticut 8, Tufts 4

At Mansfield, CT
Monday, April 27, 2009

Game Box Score

Sophomore Pat O'Donnell pitched six strong innings in relief for Tufts

MANSFIELD, Conn. -- Travis Bass and Robert Perry each hit second-inning home runs and drove in three runs in the game and Mike Tingley provided timely middle relief as the Eastern Connecticut State University baseball team held off Tufts University, 8-4, Monday night at the Eastern Baseball Stadium.

The win is the seventh straight for Eastern (28-6), ranked No. 9 nationally and third in New England. Tufts (16-16) had won four straight, eight of nine and 11 of 13 entering play.

Perry and Bass hit home runs in a six-run Eastern second inning and Bass added an RBI double and scored when the Warriors tacked on two key insurance runs in the top of the eighth after the Jumbos had whittled the lead to two by scoring four unearned runs in the top of the fifth inning.

With sophomore Pat O'Donnell (Worcester, MA) pitching effectively in relief, Tufts scored four unearned runs in the fifth inning on on four hits (two of them infield hits) and three Eastern errors to cut a six-run deficit to 6-4. Sophomore SS David Leresche (St. Louis, MO) had a two-run single in the inning for the Jumbos.

Still trailing by two, Tufts threatened in the seventh by loading the bases with one out on a walk and two hit-by-pitches. At that point, Tingley took over for starter Jim Schult and ended the threat by getting cleanup hitter Nate Bankoff (Lynnfield, MA) on a swinging third strike, and inducing a ground ball to second. Tingley struck out the side in the eighth before departing after walking the first batter of the ninth.

Schult (3-0) allowed seven hits, fanning six and walking two before giving way to Tingley. O'Donnell gave up only two hits with seven strikeouts in five innings to keep Tufts close at 6-4. In the eighth after there were two out, John Parke singled and Bass plated him with a double to make it 7-4 and Schult singled to make it 8-4.

Bass and Schult each had three hits while freshman 2B Sam Sager (Cranston, RI) and LeResche had two hits apiece for Tufts.

Tufts finishes its home and regular-season schedule on Sunday with a double-header against Babson beginning at 1 pm. Eastern hosts Wheaton College (MA) Wednesday at 7 pm.