Bears Earn Comeback Win

Brendan McNeil
Brendan McNeil

NEW LONDON, Conn. - Coast Guard came back from an early three run deficit to top Johnson & Wales 5-3 in non-conference action Monday afternoon at Cadet Memorial Field.

With the the win the Bears improve to 8-11 while the Wildcats fall to 7-6.

Sophomore Jake Behne led the way for Coast Guard going 2-3 with two RBI's and a run scored. Senior Brendan McNeil went 2-4 with a home run, a run scored and an RBI. Junior Zach Serna and sophomore Will Stephens each had an RBI as well.

Freshman Joe Maracic went 2-4 with an RBI for Johnson & Wales. Junior Rob Ballinger went 1-2 with a double, a run scored and two walks. Junior Edison Mercado and sophomore Armani Henderson each had a run scored.

The Wildcats did all their scoring in the first inning as Ballinger came around to score on a passed ball followed by an RBI single from Maracic scoring Henderson. Mercado came around to score on the same play on an error by the left fielder.

The Bears answered in the bottom of the second inning as Behne singled down the right field line scoring senior Timbo Duncan and advancing junior Alex Murdoch to third. Stephens then singled to third base bring home Murdoch. Serna finished of the inning tying the game at three with a single to third as well scoring Behne.

After three straight scoreless innings Coast Guard scored the game winning run in the bottom of the sixth as Behne singled through the left side once again plating Murdoch for the 4-3 lead.

In the bottom of the eighth inning the Bears got an insurance run off the bat of McNeil who hit a shot to left field for his first home run of the season and the third of his career.

Johnson & Wales managed to load the bases in the bottom of the ninth but freshman Brett Sullivan forced senior Lou Umberto to ground out to second, preserving Coast Guard's eighth win of the season.

Sophomore Walter Harris (1-3) pitched eight strong innings allowing two earned runs on three hits and striking out two. Sullivan earned his third save of the season pitching a scoreless ninth giving up one hit and walking on.

Sophomore Brandon Budlong (1-2) took the loss pitching six innings allowing one earned run on 10 hits and struck out four. Sophomore James Smieocki pitched two innings of relief allowing one earned run on two hits and struck out two.

Coast Guard is back in action on Tuesday, April 4, when they jump back into NEWMAC play with a game against Babson. First pitch is 3:30.

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