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Western New England Rolls to 13-2 Victory over Waynesburg in 2016 Season Opener

Western New England Rolls to 13-2 Victory over Waynesburg in 2016 Season Opener
AUBURNDALE, Fla. (March 11, 2016) - The Western New England University baseball team opened its 2016 campaign in impressive fashion this afternoon, rolling to a 13-2 victory over Waynesburg (Pa.) University in the first of eight games at the RussMatt Central Florida Invitational.
Senior right-hander David Cherry (Southbury, Conn.) took the ball for the Golden Bears on opening day and turned in six strong innings, allowing just one hit and no earned runs while striking out five batters and walking two.
The Western New England offense gave Cherry plenty of support, piling up 15 hits and scoring in every inning but the first. All nine starters reached bases, with eight Golden Bears recording at least one hit and five posting multi-hit efforts.
Freshman infielder Alex Loparco (Riverside, Conn.) led the way at the plate, going 3-for-3 in his first collegiate contest with a home run, a double, two RBI and two runs scored. Senior outfielder Doug Milne (Nesconset, N.Y.) also recorded three hits, including a pair of doubles, to go with a game-high three runs. Freshman outfielder Erik Lacaire (Worcester, Mass.) went 2-for-4 with a triple and three RBI, while senior infielders Kevin Marciano (Pepperell, Mass.) and Eduardo Colmenares (Caracas, Venezuela) added two hits and one RBI each.
Senior outfielder Matt Bensinger (Shoemakersville, Pa.) recorded Waynesburg's lone hit of the day, a second inning double, and also reached base with a walk in the fourth. Junior pitcher Luke Carter (Saegertown, Pa.) got the start for the Yellow Jackets and gave up five runs in just two innings of work, dropping to 1-1 on the season.
Waynesburg utilized a pair of Western New England throwing errors to open the scoring in the second inning, taking a 2-0 lead despite recording just one hit in the frame. Senior infielder Justin Smith (Lower Burrell, Pa.) benefitted from the first Golden Bear miscue, reaching base to lead off the inning, before advancing to third on Bensinger's double. Smith would come around to score two batters later on an RBI groundout by senior Brent Williams (Bulger, Pa.), and another error on the next play allowed Bensinger to cross the plate.
Loparco cut Western New England's deficit in half with an RBI double into the gap in left center field in the bottom half of the inning, before the Golden Bears broke the game open with nine runs in the third.
Senior catcher Matt Calzone (Middlebury, Conn.) led off the inning with a walk, and classmate Brett Morgan (Norwell, Mass.) followed with a two-run homer over the left field fence, giving Western New England a lead it would not relinquish. The next two batters reached base as well, ending Carter's outing as junior Parker Beatty (Mechanicsburg, Pa.) came on in relief.
Beatty was unable to slow down the Golden Bear offense either, as Colmenares greeted him with an RBI single and Milne executed a perfect bunt down the third base line, loading the bases. After the next batter struck out for the first out of the inning, Lacaire delivered a two-run single through the left side of the infield, while Loparco and Calzone followed with consecutive RBI singles to extend Western New England's lead to six (8-2). Marciano recorded another RBI single two batters later, and Calzone eventually came around to score on a wild pitch, capping the eight-hit, nine-run frame.
The Golden Bears added single runs in the fourth, fifth and sixth innings, while freshman right-hander Liam Davey (Cheshire, Conn.) shut the door on Waynesburg with a perfect seventh to wrap up the season-opening victory.
Western New England (1-0) will be right back in action tomorrow with a doubleheader against St. Joseph's (Maine). First pitch is scheduled for 9 AM at the Chain O'Lakes Complex (Field 6) in Winter Haven, Fla. Waynesburg (1-7) returns to action next Wednesday at Penn State-Behrend.