Ithaca, NY (WBNG Binghamton) Senior left fielder Dave Ciocchi snapped a 1-1 eighth-inning tie with a two-out RBI single and Binghamton completed a doubleheader sweep of Maine with a 2-1 win Sunday afternoon from Cornell’s Hoy Field.
The Bearcats took the opener 6-0 and with the pair of wins, knocked the Black Bears out of first place in the America East standings. Maine, which entered the day on a 14-game win streak, was held to just one run on eight hits over the 16 innings.
Ciocchi came up with two out in the bottom of the eighth and runners on first and third. He ripped an 0-1 pitch to right field to score sophomore center fielder Bill Bereszniewicz, who had led off with a single and moved to third on a single by sophomore shortstop John Howell.
After pitching eight strong innings, junior Jake Lambert gave way to classmate Lee Sosa, who worked around a leadoff walk to notch his seventh save of the season. Lambert (4-3) scattered four hits and one run, struck out three and didn’t walk a batter. The only run he allowed came across on a balk call in the first inning.
In game two, Maine opened the scoring in the second inning thanks to a two-out balk call. The Black Bears used a single and a hit batter and then with two out and runners on first and third, Lambert made a move to first base and was called for a balk, bringing in the first run.
Ciocchi went 2-for-4 with an RBI, Bereszniewicz went 2-for-4 with two runs scored, freshman right fielder Zach Blanden was 2-for-3 and Howell went 2-for-4. Bingham ton outhit Maine 10-4 – the same exact line as the first game.
The Black Bears turned a double play in each of the first two innings before Binghamton tied it with a run in the third. Bereszniewicz reached base on a fielder’s choice grounder with one out. Howell then launched a double to the gap in right center, moving Bereszniewicz to third with two out. Freshman designated hitter Jake Thomas then hit a hot smash that bounced off the Maine first baseman for an RBI infield single.
Both pitchers then settled into a groove as the teams played four scoreless middle innings, setting up Ciocchi’s deciding hit in the eighth.
In the opener, BU scored two runs in the second, three in the third and another in the fourth en route to a 6-0 win. Senior righty Mike Augliera (4-4) scattered four hits in his fourth complete game and second shutout of the season.
In the second, junior catcher Mike Danaher provided the big blow with a two-out, two-run double off the wall in left. With two out, freshman third baseman Brian Ruby hit a single to right. Sophomore second baseman Daniel Nevares followed with a walk and Danaher then ripped a 2-1 pitch to the base of the wall on left, scoring Ruby and Nevares to stake BU to a 2-0 lead.
One inning later, BU strung together four hits and three runs to extend its lead to 5-0. With one out, freshman designated hitter Jake Thomas stroked an RBI single up the middle, scoring Bereszniewicz, who had led off the inning with a single. After a Ciocchi single moved Thomas to second, he scored on a single by junior first baseman Jordon Smucker through the right side. Ruby then added a sacrifice fly to center to score Ciocchi with the team’s fifth run.
Binghamton then added one more run in the fourth to complete the scoring. Bereszniewicz drew a leadoff walk after a 10-pitch at-bat. He then stole second and went to third as the throw scattered into center field. Howell drilled a ground rule double that bounced over the wall in left, scoring Bereszniewicz.
Augliera struck out four and didn’t walk a batter. He ranks third in the nation in strikeout-to-walk ratio and improved that standing to 50-to-4. He retired the leadoff hitter in all seven innings.
Binghamton returns to Hoy Field on Tuesday - this time as the visiting team - as BU faces Cornell in a single game at 4 p.m.