NEWARK, Del. – The UMass Lowell baseball team scored early and often and then let the bullpen do the rest, Friday, as the River Hawks took the series opener from Delaware, 8-7, at Bob Hannah Stadium in Newark, Delaware.
With the win, UMass Lowell evened its record at 4-4. Delaware, a CAA member, fell to 2-5.
Junior Vinnie Martin (Lodi, N.J.) led the River Hawk offensive assault, sophomore Joshua Becker (Burlington, Mass.) provided two and one-third innings of shutdown relief when the ball club needed it the most.
Martin, a left-handed batter, hammered Blue Hen pitching for five hits, the team only had nine, and three RBIs. It was his fourth multi-hit game of the season as he upped his average to .565. He also jumped started the UMass Lowell offensive engine with his second home run of the season.
The River Hawks erupted for five runs before the Blue Hens sent a man to the plate. It all started innocently enough; a one out walk to junior Joey Castellanos (Nutley, N.J.), but that’s where innocence ended. Vinnie Martin unloaded on Delaware starter Mike Biasiello. A two-run home run to right, 2-0, and the inning was a long way from over. Freshman Nick Marola (Scotia, N.Y.) drilled a two-out three-run single to right-center field upping the scoreboard to 5-0.
UMass Lowell added to their totals with another run in the second inning. Senior Ciaran Devenney (Manalapan, N.J.) drilled a double to dead center scoring Castellanos who’d started the uprising with a one-out single.
The River Hawks added another run in the third. Martin’s third hit of the afternoon, a single to right field, plated sophomore Gerry Siracusa (Kinnelon, N.J.) who’d reached on a walk. A run in the fourth inning came across without the benefit of a base hit. Sophomore Robert Gallagher (Mullica Hill, N.J.) walked, stole second and third and came across on a wild pitch, 8-2.
The home team picked up single runs in both the second and third innings and then cut the UMass Lowell lead to three with a three-run fifth inning. UMass Lowell starter junior Henry Funaro (Lowell, Mass.) started strong but appeared to run out of gas in that fifth inning. A single, a walk and a hit batsman ended his day. Runs came across the plate on an infield out, a fly ball and a two-out single off freshman lefty Cam Seguin (Woburn, Mass.) Seguin preserved the lead and was credited with the win, the first of his collegiate career.
Junior John Polichetti (Atkinson, N.H.) pitched a scoreless sixth inning retiring the side on three fly balls.
The Blue Hens made it a one-run ballgame with two in the seventh off of junior Trevor Thompson (Eastvale, Calif.) Only one of the runs was earned.
It was in the seventh that Becker entered the ball game and quieted the Delaware bats. The right-hander got the final seven outs to pick up his third save of the season in as many opportunities. Becker, this season, has appeared in four games and worked a total of 8.2 innings. He’s allowed just one run and five hits. He has walked one while setting down 15 on strikes.
Saturday’s game two of the three-game series has been moved to Sunday after an unfavorable weather forecast. The two teams will play a doubleheader starting at noon. Grad student Collin Duffley (Manchester, N.H.) and sophomore Matt Draper (Lowell, Mass.) are expected to go to the mound.
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