|Recap, photo courtesy of NYIT|
The Bears produced nine runs in the eighth of Game 1 to rally for a 13-10 victory against Minnesota Duluth at Osceola Heritage Park.
NYIT then produced a 4-2 win against Minnesota Crookston in Game 2 to improve to 6-2 on the season.
Against Minnesota Duluth, NYIT entered the bottom of the eighth trailing 10-4.
The ensuing nine-run outburst marked the most runs scored by the Bears in an inning since an 11-run
fourth inning in a 14-13 win at Adelphi on April 29 of last season.
"The team didn't give up when we were down late in the first game," coach Frank Catalanotto said. "A lot of guys stepped up and contributed in the nine-run eighth inning. What a great comeback win."
Making his first start of the season, Zach Kleinwaks went 4-for-4, including an RBI single that began the eighth-inning rally.
EJ Cumbo followed with a three-run double. Cumbo eventually scored on a throwing error. Ben McNeill contributed a go-ahead two-run double. The Bears tacked on two more runs in the inning as Jake Lebel delivered an RBI double and then scored on a balk.
"It was a great feeling coming through with a hit in that spot for the team," McNeill said. "We are a group of battlers who don't quit in any situation. If we continue to play the game the right way, we are going to do special things this year."
Lebel finished 3-for-5 with two RBIs.
Grambling transfer Chris Campbell, slowed early this season by a fractured hamate bone in his right hand, made his NYIT debut as a pinch hitter in the eighth. He was hit by a pitch and eventually scored in the frame.
In Game 2 against Minnesota Crookston, Cumbo and John LaRocca drove in runs to help stake the Bears to an early 3-0 lead. Meanwhile, starter DJ Masuck limited the Golden Eagles to two runs (one earned) on five hits and a walk while striking out five in seven innings.
Masuck turned a 3-2 lead over to the bullpen. And after Ryan Mueller allowed a pair of batters to reach in the eighth, fellow freshman Dean Fazah entered with two outs and stranded the tying and go-ahead runs on base by coaxing a groundout from Minnesota Crookston cleanup hitter Brock Reller.
NYIT got an insurance run in the top of the ninth as Matt DeAngelis doubled and scored on an errant pickoff attempt.
Ariel Taveras handled the ninth inning of both games to earn his second and third saves of the season.
"It's great to win both games today, especially after a disappointing day yesterday," Catalanotto said. "DJ Masuck threw a lot of strikes and kept the Minnesota Crookston hitters off-balance."
March 9th Recap
Defending national champs defeat baseball in Sunshine StateKISSIMMEE, Fla. — The NYIT baseball team ran into a buzz saw against the defending national champs.
Augustana (S.D.) produced an 11-run third inning en route to a 17-7 win against the Bears on Saturday at Osceola Heritage Park.
The Bears (6-3) now complete their six-game trip to the Sunshine State with a Sunday morning game against Minnesota Crookston before flying home in the evening.
Against Augustana, Moises Robles was charged with all of the third-inning damage.
Robles, who had combined with fellow newcomer Dean Fazah on a no-hitter against regionally ranked Franklin Pierce in his NYIT debut in South Carolina on Feb. 23, this time was saddled with 11 runs on six hits, six walks and two hit batters in 2 1/3 innings.
Zach Kleinwaks and EJ Cumbo produced RBIs a half-inning after Augustana's 11-run outburst, but the deficit proved insurmountable.
Augustana currently is ranked 15th in the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association Division II poll.
A win on Sunday nonetheless would allow NYIT to return home from its Florida trip with a .500 record.
The Bears defeated Minnesota Crookston 4-2 on Friday behind seven stellar innings from right-hander DJ Masuck.