The UMBC baseball team had no problem putting runs on the boardagainst the Binghamton University Bearcats. Unfortunately, the pitching failed to match the strong offensive play as the Retrievers lost two of the three games in the weekend series, dropping them to 18-18 overall and 7-7 in the America East conference.
In the two losses, the Retrievers surrendered 13 runs, 20 hits and three home runs. None of the UMBC starting pitchers lasted longer than four innings. The Retrievers hurlers, who rank in the bottom half of the country in strikeouts per nine innings, continued to struggle missing bats, fanning only 15 Bearcats batters in 25 innings.
The pitchers did not receive a great deal of help from the defense behind them. The Retrievers, fourth in the America East in fielding percentage, committed nine errors, five coming in the Sunday afternoon game. The defensive miscues led to three unearned runs in the series for Binghamton (17-20, 12-3 America East).
The pitching and defense did not help out an offense that consistently put runs on the board in all three games. The Retrievers hit .285 this series, with three doubles and six home runs. The power hitting has been there all year for the Retrievers who are second in the America east in slugging percentage and lead the conference in home runs.
However, the offense was not perfect, leaving 20 men on base though the three games, a number that looms especially large considering all of the games were decided by two runs or less.
The only pitcher that really stood out for the Retrievers was sophomore Patrick Phillips. Phillips was the winning pitcher in the Retrievers lone win, pitching four scoreless innings, giving up three hits and striking out one.
Catcher Hunter Dolshun played great throughout the series. Dolshun, who is in the top 10 in the America East in batting average, slugging percentage and RBI’s, batted .545 with three home runs, six runs batted in, a walk and no strikeouts in the three games.
Designated hitter Kevin Lachance also continued his stellar play, batting .500 while scoring three times, doubling once, homering once and did not strike out in 12 at bats.
Senior Anthony Gatto played right field in all three games and continued to tear the leather off the ball, batting .500, scoring three times, doubling once, walking once, and driving in two runs. Gatto now has a nine game hit streak, batting .486 during that span.
The Retrievers host Coppin State University on Wednesday. The Retriever offense should have no problem scoring, as the Eagles have the second highest ERA in the country, only Mississippi Valley State is worse. That game is followed by a seven game road trip, playing Stony Brook University, George Mason University and the University of Massachusetts Lowell.