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Three-Run Eighth Lifts MIT to 10-8 Win over Western New England

Junior Alex Loparco doubled and drove in three runs in Western New England's 10-8 loss to MIT on Saturday. (Photo by Rachael Margossian)
Junior Alex Loparco doubled and drove in three runs in Western New England's 10-8 loss to MIT on Saturday. (Photo by Rachael Margossian)

Loparco posts 2-for-3 effort with a double, three RBI and two runs scored

NORTHBOROUGH, Mass. (March 10, 2018) –
The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) baseball team overcame a late deficit with a three-run eighth inning as the Engineers defeated Western New England University, 10-8, on Saturday afternoon in non-conference action at the New England Baseball Complex. 

Top Performers
• Junior shortstop Alex Loparco (Riverside, Conn.) led the Western New England offense, going 2-for-3 at the plate with a double, three RBI and two runs scored.
• Senior third baseman Jared Rosenblatt (Avon, Conn.) went 2-for-4 with two walks and two RBI, while junior outfielder Joe Cassella (Wallingford, Conn.) walked, singled and scored a run.

• Sophomore Matt Johnston (Portola Valley, Calif.) powered MIT with a pair of home runs and three RBI.
• Senior Max Lancaster (Attleboro, Mass.) went 3-for-4 with a walk and two runs, while classmate Kyle Kocher (Mesa, Az.) drove in the game-winning run with an RBI single in the bottom of the eighth.

Game Review
Western New England plated multiple runs in each of the first three innings, including a pair of unearned runs in the top of the first as sophomore Kevin Johnson (Waterford, Conn.) and Loparco scored on a wild pitch and a throwing error, respectively.

The Golden Bears tacked on three more runs in the top of the second, courtesy of Loparco's RBI double down the left field line and Rosenblatt's two-run single.

MIT broke through in the bottom half of the inning, as freshman Zach Roberts (West Chester, Pa.) came through with a two-out single to left field, scoring Lancaster.

Western New England increased its lead to 7-1 with two runs in the top of the third on a two-out, two-run single to center field by Loparco.

The Engineers began to chip away at their deficit, however, as they scored three times in the fourth and once in the fifth before tying the contest (7-7) on Johnston's two-run homer to center in the sixth.

Junior center fielder Erik Lacaire (Worcester, Mass.) put the Golden Bears back in front with a solo homer to left field in the top of the eighth.

Western New England's lead would be short lived, as MIT completed its comeback with three runs in the bottom half of the frame. Johnston struck again with a solo home run to right field, and three batters later, Kocher delivered the game-winning hit with an RBI single. Freshman Ethan Rolland (Burke, Va.) came up next and provided the Engineers with an insurance run, as he drove in Kocher with a single to right center.

MIT freshman left-hander Adam Katz (Mt. Kisco, N.Y.) walked the bases loaded in the top of the ninth, but was able to strand all three Western New England runners to secure the win for the Engineers.

• MIT pitchers issued ten walks and hit six Western New England batters. The Golden Bears were unable to fully capitalize, however, as they left 15 men on base.
• Senior right-hander Jake Kawiecki (Burlington, Conn.) got the start for Western New England and did not receive a decision after striking out seven batters and allowing four earned runs over four innings of work.
• Loparco is closing in on 100 career hits with 93 through 83 games.

Up Next
Western New England (0-2) will be right back in action tomorrow, as the Golden Bears return to the New England Baseball Complex to play two games against Brandeis beginning at noon. MIT (2-3) will be off for a week, before hosting Bates for a doubleheader next Saturday, March 17.