Baseball: Walks cost Spartans in twinbill sweep
Issue date: 4/17/09 Section: Sports
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In the first game, the lead changed hands several times, and the score was 3-3 when Westminster scored two runs in the fifth. No other runs would be scored, and the game would end as a 5-3 loss.
The second game was a particularly tough loss, as the Spartans were ahead 5-1 before giving up two runs in the sixth inning and three runs in the seventh.
"Going into the last inning, we were up 5-3, but really just weren't able to throw enough strikes," said Coach Matt Englander. "Even when we didn't walk guys, we were behind in counts, and it's really difficult to pitch that way, to win a game that way, when hitters know a fastball's coming and they're able to take hacks at them. So hopefully we learned the lesson that you need to be in the strike zone with more than one pitch to be effective. We just didn't do that in the last inning or two on Saturday."
They built up their early lead with the help of Cory Pecoraro and Phil Keefe, who hit back-to-back home runs in the fifth inning. "Obviously, that was exciting. They both hit fastballs and got pretty good pieces of them. There was really no doubt whether [the home runs] were going out or not," said Englander. "Cory actually hit his to the opposite field. He's a left-handed hitter, and hit it to left-center field. Phil's pretty much chased it right to the same spot. That, to me, marks that their swings are in pretty good shape, that they're driving the ball in the gaps."
Pitchers A.J. Boshinski and Cory Smith put together solid outings in the two games, but they gave their share of walks, as did the rest of the staff. "They pitched well enough for us to win, but poorly enough for us to lose too," said Englander. "Unfortunately, those walks did end up hurting them, but otherwise they were good. They both had command of more than one pitch, threw their fastball and breaking ball with regularity, and were pretty good and certainly gave us a chance to win. It was a positive step for both guys."