Auburndale, FL - The Northern Vermont University-Lyndon baseball team rode the pitching of seniors Jake Jourdain (Becket, MA), John Boulay (Dighton, MA), and Ben Rollins (Lincolnville, ME) to a 4-1 victory in their opening game at the 2019 RussMatt Central Florida Invitational on Monday morning. Lyndon is scheduled to play ten games over the next week before heading back to Vermont. Capital is winless in four starts so far at RussMatt.
Lyndon got on the scoreboard first in the top of the second inning. With one out, Cameron Flinn (Barre, VT) was hit by a pitch and Chris April (Rollinsford, NH) followed by drawing a walk. A pair of passed balls allowed Flinn to come around and score, giving the Hornets a 1-0 lead.
The Hornets added a second run in the top of the third inning. Codi Smith (Hartford, VT) singled to start the inning. He moved to third on Caleb Laroche's (Franklin, VT) one-out double, and scored on a Tucker Root (Middlefield, CT) single.
Lyndon tacked on a pair of runs in the top of the sixth inning. April singled with one out and Tyler Roberge (Essex, VT) walked. Zak Johnson (East Hampton, CT) then delivered a single to left, but Capital left fielder Bryce Grisez gunned down April trying to score. Rollins then walked to load the bases and Smith followed with a two-run single to make it 4-0, Hornets.
Meanwhile, Jourdain, the Lyndon starter, cruised through the first five innings, yielding only a pair of singles and a pair of walks, and not allowing a Crusader base runner past first base. Capital threatened to break through in the bottom of the sixth when Connor Richardson reached on an error, Alex Stefanelli singled, and Shayne Lyons reached on a fielder's choice, moving Richarsdon to third. Jourdain got Drew Ellis to pop out to end the Capital threat.
Boulay relieved Jourdain in the bottom of the eighth and set the Crusaders down in order. He ran into trouble in the bottom of the 9th, however, when Stefanelli led off with a double and scored on an Ellis double. Rollins came in in relief and promptly struck out pinch hitter Tom Cavanaugh. The next two Capital hitters, Brandon Barnette and Mitchell Bodden walked to load the bases and put the tying run on base, but Rollins was able to get Griesz to pop out to end the game.
Jourdain scattered three hits and struck out six over seven innings to earn the win, while Capital starter Anthony Gannon took the loss.
The Hornets will play two more games at the RussMatt on Tuesday. At 9:45 am they will face the Milwaukee School of Engineering, and at 4:45 they will meet Hanover College. Both games will be played on Lake Myrtle Park Field #8 in Auburndale.