Sophomore second baseman Ryan Zielinski (Schenectady, N.Y.) slugged two home runs and drove in eight runs in game one and freshman first baseman Joe Borowski (Schenectady, N.Y.) connected for a single through the right side of the infield for a walkoff win in game two to give Castleton a sweep over the University of Maine-Farmington, by scores of 17-1 and 2-1, in North Eastern Athletic Conference (NEAC) East action on Sunday afternoon.
The Spartans improve to 9-14 overall and 5-3 in the NEAC East. The Beavers fall to 1-12 (1-3).
In game one, Castleton used 13 hits to score 17 runs spearheaded by Zielinski who went 3-for-5 on the afternoon with three runs scored, eight RBI and two home runs. Matt Eisenhuth So. Newfane, Vt.) went 2-for-3 with two runs scored and drove in a pair while catcher Matthew Pause (Wilder, Vt.) also wrapped up the afternoon with a 2-for-3 performance at the plate and two RBI.
Tyler Erickson (Naugatuck, Conn.) earned the win (3-2) on five innings of work, six hits, one run (earned), no walks and four strikeouts. Dale Winchenbach (Walkdoboro, Maine) was handed the loss (0-2) pitching three-and-one-thirds innings allowing five hits, seven runs (six earned)and two walks.
Trailing 1-0 in the bottom of the third inning after Beavers first baseman Josh Garneau (So. Portland, Maine) singled home Ian McAlister(So. Berwick, Maine) from third with the bases loaded, Zielinski gave the Spartans the lead for good with a two-run blast down the left field line plating David Brandt (Contocook, N.H.) who reached on a fielding error to lead off the inning.
Castleton erupted for six more in the fourth as Pause and Zielinski highlighted the inning offensively. Pause ripped a two-run single through the right side of the infield while Zielinski hammered a two-run triple to center field. In the sixth, Zielinski notched his second home run of the game depositing a grand slam over the left field fence to cap the scoring in an eight run frame for the Spartans.
In game two, senior pitcher Seth Harrington (Bennington, Vt.) earned the complete game victory (2-1) giving up six hits, one run (unearned)with no walks and five punchouts. Ben Pearson (No. Stonington, Conn.)was dealt the hard luck loss on six-and-one-thirds innings, four hits,two runs (both earned), one walk and two strikeouts.
The Beavers claimed an early 1-0 advantage in the top of the fourth executing on small ball play. After Zach Keene (Livermore, Maine)reached first on an error and advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt by Winchenbach, third baseman Patrick Wrigley (Oakland, Maine) singled to left field plating Keene.
Maine-Farmington nearly took a 2-0 lead in the top of the sixth but a fine defensive play by the Spartans kept the deficit to only one run. Jack MacVane (Mechanic Falls, Maine) led off the frame with a double to left field and advanced to third base on a groundout. With one out,Winchenba tapped a groundball to shortstop Aaron Zrenda (East Lyme,Conn.) and was thrown out at first but, MacVane – hustling from third trying to score an insurance run – was gunned down by Borowski at the plate.
The Spartans tied up the game in the next half inning with key two-out clutch hitting as Zielinski doubled to right field and center fielder Jack Lancelin (Chatham, N.Y.) drove in the game-tying run with a triple to center field.
In the seventh, Zak Mayo (Avon, Conn.) walked to lead off the inning and was pinch run for by Adam Greenlese (Shokan, N.Y.). Zrenda followed with a sac bunt to advance Greenlese to second setting up Borowski’s walkoff single through the right side of the infield for the 2-1 win.