Waterville, ME - The Lyndon State College baseball team rode a pair of outstanding pitching performances to a doubleheader sweep of Thomas College at the Colby College Baseball Complex on Sunday afternoon. The Hornets used a four-run sixth inning to break open a close game one, as they came away with a 7-1 win, then Andre Eason Jr.'s (Waterbury, CT) walk-off single capped a 2-1 come from behind win in the nightcap. The twinbill opened North Atlantic Conference play for the Hornets, and improved their overall record to 6-10. Thomas fell to 2-15 overall and 0-4 in the NAC.
Game 1 - Lyndon 7, Thomas 1
Thomas got on the board in the top of the first in the opener. Nicholas Cousins (Wells, ME) drew a two-out walk and came all the way around to score on a long single from Alex Curtis (Monmouth, ME). That would prove to be the only run allowed by Lyndon starter James Mundy (Brentwood, NH).
The Hornets took the lead with a pair of runs in the bottom of the second inning. Codi Smith (Hartford, VT) led off the inning with a walk. After David Laroche (Franklin, VT) moved Smith to second with a sacrifice bunt, Jason Doris (Lincoln, RI) singled home Smith. After moving to second on a fielder's choice, Doris came around to score when Sam Ogenoff (Brattleboro, VT) reached on a throwing error.
Lyndon tacked on a run in the bottom of the third when Ryan Cordiero (Rollinsford, NH) reached on an error, stole second, moved to third on Zak Johnson's (East Hampton, CT) sacrifice bunt, and scored on Eason's single.
Meanwhile, Mundy kept the Terrier bats in check. He was able to stand two Thomas baserunners that reached on errors in the second inning. Then over the next four innings he allowed only a single baserunner, a two-out single from Isaiah Arana (Orlando, FL), in the top of the fifth.
The Hornets broke the game open in the bottom of the sixth, scoring four runs on only a single base hit. Four straight walks brought home the first run, then Ogenoff was hit by a pitch to score another. A third came home when Zach Hale (St. Johnsbury, VT) grounded into a double play, then Cordiero singled home a fourth.
Andrew Whalen (Cumberland, RI) then relieved Mundy and pitched a scoreless seventh to close the door.
Mundy allowed only two hits and struck out six over six innings to earn his second win of the season. Cody Cousins (Wells, ME) took the loss after allowing three runs, one earned, and four hits over 4.2 innings.
Game 2 - Lyndon 2, Thomas 1
The nightcap turned out to be a pitcher's duel between Lyndon's Jake Jourdain (Becket, MA) and Thomas's Matt Rutherford (Saco, ME). While Jourdain set the Terriers down in order in the first two innings, Rutherford was able to strand two Hornet baserunners in the first and another in the second.
The Terriers' Hank Vinall (Blue Hill, ME) walked to lead off the top of the third inning. After moving to second on a passed ball, Vinall moved to third on Isaiah Choiniere's (Springfield, MA) one-out single. Arana then singled home Vinall for the first run of the game, with Choineire moving to third on the play. At that point Thomas attempted a double steal, but Cordiero cut down Choinere at the plate and Jourdain was able to pitch out of further trouble.
Rutherford set the Hornets down in order in the third and fourth innings, while Jourdain was able to strand one runner in the fourth and two more in the top of the fifth.
Ben Rollins (Lincolnville, ME) singled to lead off the Hornet half of the fifth inning. After Ogenoff reached on a fielder's choice when Rollins was forced out at second, Caleb Laroche (Franklin, VT) reached on an error, which allowed Rollins to advance to third base. Cordiero walked to load the bases, then Johnson delivered a sacrifice fly to right, scoring Ogenoff to tie the game at 1-1. Rutherford was able to get Eason to fly out to center to end the inning and the Hornet threat.
After a scoreless sixth inning, Whalen relieved Jourdain to start the seventh. Thomas was able to get the go ahead run aboard when Roberto Duran (San Diego, CA) greeted Whalen with a single. Whalen stranded him at second, however, setting the stage for Eason's heroics.
Caleb Laroche walked to lead off the home half of the seventh. After Cordiero reached on a bunt single, Collin Clark (Rutland, VT) pinch ran for Laroche. Johnson then reached on a bunt single, loading the bases. Eason then delivered a single to right center, scoring Clark and giving the Hornets the win and the sweep.
Jourdain allowed one run on six hits and struck out ten over six innings, with Whalen earning the win in relief. Rutherford went the distance and took the loss, allowing two runs, one earned, and six hits with six strikeouts.
The Hornets were scheduled to play at Colby-Sawyer College on Monday afternoon, but that doubleheader has been postponed due to unplayable field consitions. No reschedule date has been determined yet. At present, the Hornets are scheduled to open their home campaign when they host New England College in a doubleheader at the Skip Pound Baseball Complex on Wednesday afternoon starting at 2:00 pm. Thomas plays at Colby on Tuesday.