MANCHESTER, N.H. (April 30, 2019) – The Franklin Pierce University baseball team was defeated on the road on Tuesday night, 11-0, by No. 15/15 nationally ranked Southern New Hampshire, in Northeast-10 Conference Northeast Division action at Penmen Field.
With the loss, Franklin Pierce falls to 21-20 (14-11 NE10, 10-8 NE Div.), while SNHU improves to 33-11 (19-6 NE10, NE Div.). As a result of Assumption's win over Merrimack earlier in the day, the outcome of Tuesday's game was rendered moot for Franklin Pierce, whose postseason hopes will come down to the final series of the season, against said Assumption squad. The two teams will meet for a doubleheader at 3 p.m. Friday and a single game at noon Saturday, all at Pappas Field in Rindge. Whichever team wins at least two of the three games will qualify for the NE10 Championship, while the other will not.
SNHU took the drama out of Tuesday's meeting early, with a six-spot in the home half of the first inning. Junior second baseman Joshua Goldstein had the biggest blow of the inning, with a two-run, two-out single through the left side of the infield to make it a 4-0 game. Also in the inning, sophomore catcher Dakota Mulcay and sophomore center fielder Idelson Taveras had RBI singles, senior right fielder Kevin Alexy drove in a run with a sacrifice fly and another run scored on an error.
The Penmen added two more in the second to break things open and push the lead to 8-0. Mulcay walked with two outs and moved to second as senior left fielder Joshua Zbierski reached on an error. Both runners would come around to score when Alexy followed with a two-run double into the gap in left-center field.
SNHU would tack on single runs in the fifth, sixth and eighth innings to create the 11-0 final.
With the import of the upcoming series with Assumption in mind, Franklin Pierce was committed to refraining from the use of any of the pitchers in its starting rotation or any of its front-line bullpen arms on Tuesday. As a result, freshman left-hander Connor Houle (Waterford, N.Y.) made his first collegiate start. He would throw just the first inning, allowed six runs (five earned) on six hits, walked one and suffered the loss (0-2). Junior right-hander Matt Michals (Needham, Mass.) followed with five innings of relief to carry the day's heaviest load. He allowed four runs (three earned) on six hits, walked one, hit a batter and struck out two in what was, by far, the longest outing of his collegiate career.
Graduate student right-hander Jake Walkinshaw (7-0) took the ball and threw 89 pitches (59 strikes) over the first seven innings for SNHU. He did not allow a run on three hits, walked one, hit a batter and struck out 10.
For more information on Franklin Pierce Athletics, please visit the official website of Franklin Pierce Athletics (https://www.fpuravens.com). Also be sure to follow the Ravens through the Department of Athletics' official Facebook page (http://www.facebook.com/FranklinPierceRavens), its YouTube channel (http://www.youtube.com/franklinpiercesports) and its Twitter feed (http://twitter.com/FPUathletics). Fans wishing to purchase Franklin Pierce baseball apparel can do so at the Department of Athletics' online store (https://www.fpuravens.com/store).