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Baseball Advance To NEWMAC Baseball Championship With 8-4 Win Over Clark

NORTON, MA- Junior shortstop Chris McCarthy (East Longmeadow, MA/Longmeadow) went a perfect 3-for-3 with two runs scored and a walk and senior hurler Bryan Royal (Orange, MA/Cushing Academy) posted his first complete-game victory of the year, leading the number-three seed Springfield College baseball team to an 8-4 win over seventh seed Clark University in Sunday's New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) Tournament semifinal at Wheaton College's Sidell Stadium.

Springfield now advances to the championship round for the second straight season, where they will face unbeaten Wheaton Monday at 3:30 p.m. Improving to 19-14 overall, the Pride will need to defeat Wheaton twice in order to lay claim to their first conference tournament title. Clark falls to 17-18 overall.

The Cougars held a 1-0 lead after two innings of play this afternoon, but Springfield used two four-run innings in the third and fourth frames to capture an 8-1 advantage and a lead that was not relinquished. Junior Scott Samolewicz (Florence, MA/Northampton) highlighted the Pride's third inning with a two-run single to right field. In the fourth, Springfield plated four unearned runs to take a seven-run lead. Senior Matt Basteri (Melrose, MA/Melrose) drove in two runs with a single up the middle.

Springfield held Clark scoreless for six straight innings, but the Cougars made things interesting in the ninth. Consecutive singles from sophomore Nicholas Tapper (Hopkinton, MA/Hopkinton), junior Scott Archibald (Windham, CT/Windham) and senior Jeffrey Gagnon (West Springfield, MA/West Springfield) loaded the bases to begin the frame. Freshman Joseph Silva (Westbury, NY/Carie Place) then drew a walk to score Clark's second run of the game.

First-year Matthew Adams (Jackson Heights, NY/Francis Lewis) then entered the game in a pinch hitting situation and delivered, belting a two-run single to center to help the Cougars narrow their deficit to four runs. Springfield's Royal bounced back to force a come backer to the mound, which resulted in a double play ball for a quick two outs. Royal proceeded to get his final batter to foul off a pitch towards the backstop, as sophomore catcher Jeff Hewes (Groton, CT/Groton) made the routine catch to secure the victory.

Royal allowed four earned runs on 11 hits with one strikeout and four walks, while Clark sophomore Timothy Simokonis (Worcester, MA/St. Peter Marian) suffered the loss. Simokonis surrendered four runs on four hits while fanning one batter and issuing two walks. Offensively for the Cougars, Archibald, Tapper and senior captain Todd Mathewson (North Branford, CT/North Branford) posted two hits apiece.
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Head Coach Mark Simeone

Head Coach Mark Simeone Former Springfield College standout Mark Simeone will enter his 18th season as the head baseball coach at his alma mater in 2014. The 2012 NEWMAC Coach of the Year, Simeone will lead a veteran squad this spring. Read more.

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