Posted: May 02, 2010
SPRINGFIELD, Mass. - Freshman pitcher Kevin Jefferis (Cheshire, CT) won his seventh game of the season without a loss as second-seeded Western New England College defeated fifth-seeded Salve Regina 8-5 Sunday afternoon (May 2) to capture The Commonwealth Coast Conference (TCCC) Baseball Tournament title for the third consecutive year.
The Golden Bears won the league crown the old-fashioned way with five straight wins after losing to Anna Maria in an opening round contest last Tuesday (Apr. 27). Their reward ... a trip to the NCAA Division III Championship for the sixth time in the last seven years.
It was another team effort beginning with the rookie Jefferis who went 5 2/3 innings allowing seven hits, two runs, two walks, and a pair of strikeouts. He went 7 2/3 innings in a 4-3 win over Anna Maria in an elimination game on Friday.
Sophomore relief pitcher Mike Lawlor (Windsor, CT) gave up a hit with two walks and four strikeouts in the final 2 1/3 innings to gain his seventh save of the season.
Sophomore right fielder Tom Bouvier (East Longmeadow, MA) had two doubles, scored twice, and drove in a run. Senior first baseman Joe Griglun (Southington, CT) and freshman second baseman Mike Rubino (Northford, CT) each contributed a single and double. Senior shortstop Justin Walz (Groton, CT) also collected two hits.
WNEC took a 1-0 lead in the third on a sacrifice fly by junior catcher Jason Leclerc (Chicopee, MA). The Golden Bears added a pair of runs in the fourth on a run-scoring triple by senior center fielder Steve Kearney (Glastonbury, CT) and sacrifice fly by junior designated hitter Ryan Dudzinski (Bristol, CT). Dudzinski also stole his 28th base of the season.
The Seahawks got on the board with two runs in the sixth when senior catcher Dave Miller (Shelton, CT) knocked-in senior third baseman Tom Glynn (Woodbridge, CT) who was hit by a pitch and sophomore first baseman Michael O'Neill (Pawtucket, RI) who doubled.
Western New England College answered with three runs in the bottom of the inning to go ahead 6-2. The big hits were a RBI single by Walz and a two-run double by Griglun.
SRU came right back with three runs in the seventh to cut the margin to one following a two-run single by senior right fielder Riley Diaz (Miami, FL) and a passed.
The Golden Bears added an insurance run in the bottom of the seventh when Bouvier delivered his second double and tacked on their final run in the eighth on a RBI single by Leclerc.
Salve Regina out-hit Western New England College, but stranded 12 runners on base. The Seahawks had two runners on base the last two innings, but Lawlor got out of the jams both times.
Sophomore second baseman Nicholas Politelli (Warwick, RI) reached base five times for the visitors with four singles and a walk. O'Neill also had two hits while Glynn scored a pair of runs.
Junior pitcher Charles Matarazzo (Montville, NJ) (1-5) went six innings giving up eight hits and six runs with three walks and a strikeouts.
Five players were hit by pitches in the game, including Glynn who was nailed twice. Kearney got plunked for the 19th time this season.
WNEC senior Matt Rogers (Portsmouth, RI) and Salve Regina junior Craig Silva (Marlborough, MA), normally starting pitchers,, were used in middle relief.