Hummer earns first career win, Hamel picks up second save of season
AUBURNDALE, Fla. (March 22, 2018) – The Western New England University baseball team scored a pair of early runs and held off the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point late to earn a 2-1 victory over the Pointers on Thursday afternoon at the Lake Myrtle Complex.
• Junior outfielder Joe Cassella (Wallingford, Conn.) recorded an RBI triple and sophomore first baseman Zac Nussbaum (Bridgewater, Mass.) hit a sacrifice fly in the second inning to account for Western New England's only runs of the contest.
• Freshman right-hander Kevin Hummer (Shrewsbury, Mass.) got the start for the Golden Bears and earned the win after allowing one run on three hits with four strikeouts over five innings. Junior left-hander Bob Hamel (Southwick, Mass.) finished the job, as he retired the final five batters and worked out of a ninth-inning jam to pick up his second save of the season.
• Sophomore first baseman Lucas Luedtke (River Falls, Wis.) led the Wisconsin-Stevens Point offense, going 2-for-4 with one RBI.
• Senior right-hander Ben Miller (Union Grove, Wis.) struck out four batters and surrendered just two unearned runs on three hits over eight innings, but took the loss for the Pointers.
Hummer retired the first six batters he faced in order, and Western New England jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the second inning.
Junior outfielder Erik Lacaire (Worcester, Mass.) led off and reached on an error, and two batters later junior catcher Brian Valeriano (Stratford, Conn.) doubled to left field, putting two runners in scoring position.
Nussbaum came up next and got the Golden Bears on the board with a sacrifice fly, scoring Lacaire, before Cassella plated Western New England's second run with a triple to left center.
Wisconsin-Stevens Point cut its deficit in half on Luedtke's RBI single in the top of the fourth, but the Pointers missed an opportunity to do further damage as Hummer induced an inning-ending double play with the bases loaded.
After stranding two runners on base in the fifth, seventh and eighth innings, Wisconsin-Stevens Point appeared poised to tie the contest in the ninth.
Freshman infielder Tommy Duddleston (Chicago, Ill.) led off with a double to right field, and the next batter reached base on an error, allowing Duddleston to move up to third with no outs in the inning.
Hamel struck out the next two batters looking, however, before getting Luedtke to pop out to end the contest.
• The Pointers stranded 12 runners on base over the course of the game, including eight in scoring position.
• Western New England's four relief pitchers allowed four hits and issued two walks, but combined to turn in four shutout innings.
• Loparco has compiled 21 hits through nine games this season, after totaling 46 hits in 40 games last spring.
Western New England (6-3) will be back in action tomorrow at 9 a.m. against Elmhurst (Ill.) College at the Chain O'Lakes Stadium in Winter Haven.