Baseball Sweeps NESCAC East Double-header and Series from Bowdoin

MEDFORD – Tufts junior 2B Elias Varinos tripled home the game-winning run in the bottom of the sixth in the opener, then junior RF Ryan Day had four hits to lead the Jumbos' 18-hit attack in the nightcap as Tufts swept a NESCAC East Division double-header from Bowdoin College on Sunday 5-4 and 16-0.

Freshman Aidan Tucker had a save in the first game and got the win in game two.

Sophomore DH Kyle Cortese homered in both games and freshman pitcher Aidan Tucker had a save in the first game and earned the win in game two was Tufts improved to 18-5 overall and 5-1 in the NESCAC East. Senior Ben Suski homered in game one and scored twice on the day for Bowdoin, who dropped to 3-17-1 and 3-6 in the NESCAC East. Including Saturday's 7-6 walk-off win, Tufts swept the weekend three-game series from the Polar Bears.

In the seven-inning first game, Tufts trailed 4-2 entering the bottom of the fifth. They tied the score 4-4 as sophomore CF Justin Mills and Cortese both hit solo home runs in the inning. In the top of the sixth, Bowdoin sophomore 3B Owen Gideon-Murphy reached on an error and stole second. However, Jumbo freshman reliever Brendan McFall got a strike out to strand him there.

In the bottom of the sixth, Tufts senior SS Will Shackelford started a two-out rally with a walk. Varinos then tripled to right-center scoring Shackelford for a 5-4 lead. Tucker pitched a 1-2-3 top of the seventh including two strikeouts to finish off the win.

Bowdoin had loaded the bases in the top of the first inning and scored twice. Junior SS Eric Mah singled and scored when senior 1B Jack Wilhoite was hit by a pitch. Freshman 3B Nick Merrill walked and scored on a sac fly by sophomore LF Austin Zakow.

The Jumbos answered with two of their own in the bottom of the first. Varinos led off with a single, went to third on another single by Mills and scored on a ground ball out by senior LF Casey Santos-Ocampo. A Bowdoin error allowed Santos-Ocampo to score from first tying the game 2-2.

Suski helped Bowdoin score single runs in the second and fourth innings. He was hit by a pitch to lead off the second and eventually scored on a sac fly by senior RF Brandon Lopez. Suski then hit a solo home run to lead off the fourth giving the Polar Bears a 4-2 advantage.

McFall was outstanding in relief for Tufts, earning his first collegiate win with five innings of two-hit, one-run pitching. Tucker earned his second save. Jumbo pitching held Bowdoin to four hits. Varinos was 3 for 4 and Mills went 2 for 3 to lead Tufts offensively.

Mah had two hits at the top of the Bowdoin order in game one. Reliever Colby Lewis was the losing pitcher, allowing the run in the sixth. Junior Connor Lee had a decent start for the visitors (5 IP, 6 H, 3 ER).

The Jumbos scored in each of the first six innings and had five players finish with multiple hits in game two. Day went 4 for 4 with four rbis and two runs. Freshman 1B Peter DeMaria finished 3 for 4 and scored four runs. Mills was 3 for 5 with two runs and an rbi. Junior 3B JP Knight had a 2 for 5 with two rbis and two runs game.

Cortese hit a three-run home run in a four-run first inning for the Jumbos. Santos-Ocampo homered to right field scoring two in the second putting Tufts up 6-0. Mills had an rbi single as Tufts went ahead 8-0 in the third.

Three more Jumbo runs came across in the fourth when Day had an rbi single and scored, helping Tufts to an 11-0 advantage. He then added a two-run double in the fifth as the Jumbos surged to a 13-0 lead. Knight's two-run double was the centerpiece of a three-run sixth in which Tufts finished its scoring.

Tucker started and was outstanding for the Jumbos allowing just four hits and no runs in seven innings. He struck out seven and walked only one. Bowdoin had its best threat in the first when Zakow walked with one out and Lopez followed with a double. Tucker got the next two on a pop-up and a strikeout to leave the runners stranded. Sophomore catcher Matt Nakamota doubled with two outs in the seventh, but Tucker again ended the frame with a K. The win improved his record to 4-0.

Jumbos Michael Volgende and Spencer Langdon both pitched scoreless innings of relief.

Bowdoin used seven pitchers in the game with sophomore starter Peter O'Connell taking the loss (1 IP, 3 H, 4 R). Freshmen Jeff Price and Michael Weber pitched scoreless innings of relief for the Polar Bears.

Weather permitting, Tufts is scheduled to play its annual Patriots Day double-header versus Mass.-Dartmouth tomorrow. Bowdoin also plays tomorrow at home against Thomas (Maine).