Springfield, Mass. -- March 26, 2009 -- Andrew Poliferno gave up just four hits while pitching a complete game victory to lead his Westfield State baseball team to a 9-1 non-conference win over Springfield College this afternoon at rainy Berry-Allen Field. With the win, the Owls are now 8-5, while Springfield drops to 3-10.
Poliferno, a junior righthander from Sharon, Mass., struck out 7, while walking none in the 9-inning contest, played under wet conditions from the first inning on. Poliferno is now 1-0. For Springfield, junior righthander Mike Cole (Greenfield, Mass.) went just 2 2/3 innings, giving up 4 runs on 8 hits, while striking out 1 and walking 4. Only two of those four runs were earned.
Certainly the big inning of the day was the second for the Owls. The inning began with a single by freshman 3B Matt Kelly (Weymouth, Mass.). Sophomore catcher Pete Hogan (Weymouth, Mass.) was then hit by a pitch, and both runners were sacrificed over. Sophomore 2B Pete Grillo (Shrewsbury, Mass.) then hit a grounder to short that was misplayed, with one run scoring. Senior LF Brad King (Perth, Ontario), then hit a tapper down the third-base line with the runner from third attempting to score. The third baseman, however, sailed one wide of the plate, the ball thrown to the backstop, and a second run scored. A runner was then thrown out at the plate on a fielder's choice to the second baseman, and it looked like Cole was going to get out of the jam with minimal damage. Two walks then forced in the third run. That brought up junior 1B Ben Campbell (Easthampton, Mass.), who tripled to deep right-center, scoring three more big runs.
In the third inning, the Owls tacked on two more when freshman RF Alex Xiarhos (Yarmouthport, Mass.) hit a triple down the right field line with two outs. That made it 8-0 for Westfield State.
Springfield scored its lone run in the fourth inning when freshman 2B Mike Corletta (Westtown, N.Y.) doubled to lead it off, then advanced to third on a groundout. He scored moments later on an infield single by senior SS Jamie Mackie (Springfield, Mass.). That made it, 8-1.
The game's final run was scored in the top of the 6th when King blasted a long solo shot to right-center.
Westfield State scored its 9 runs on just 7 hits. Junior RHP Chris Collard (Coventry, R.I.) pitched well for Springfield, giving up just 2 hits and 1 run in 4 1/3 innings of relief. Senior RHP Travis Turgeon (Norwich, Conn.) then pitched a scoreless 8th, and sophomore RHP Mario Piscitelli (Greenlawn, N.Y.) pitched a scoreless 9th for the Pride. Piscitelli incidentally made two brilliant plays in the field during his play at third base in the middle innings.
For WSC, seven different players had the hits. By the same token, SC's hits were by four different players.
Springfield's next four games, and seven of its next eight, will be played on the road. This Saturday at noon, the Pride begins that stretch with a doubleheader at Brandeis.