WORCESTER, Mass. - The Worcester State University baseball team opened its three game weekend series against Framingham State with a 5-2 Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference win Friday afternoon at Lyons Diamond.
With the win, the Lancers improve to 11-12 overall on the season and 4-6 in the MASCAC. Framingham State drops to 12-12 and 6-4 in the MASCAC.
Both starting pitchers, Worcester State's PJ Walsh (Bridgewater, Mass.) and Framingham State's Kevin Connelly (Bolton, Mass.) were dealing in the early going, as neither allowed a hit until the third inning. In the bottom of the third, the Lancers scored first when freshman Andrew Miller (Naples, Fla.) hit a screaming line drive over the left field wall for a two-run home run, putting his team ahead 2-0.
The advantage was short-lived however, as Framingham senior Joe Ambrosino (Bradenton, Fla.) tied the score with a towering home run over to right field, leveling the score at 2-2 in the top of the fourth.
Both pitchers would settle in over the next three innings, as the score remained 2-2 headed to the bottom of the seventh inning. With one away in the inning and runners on first and second, senior Ben Palatino (Hudson, Mass.) hit a first pitch three-run bomb to left to put the Lancers on top 5-2.
Framingham threatened to cut into the lead in the top of the eighth, but reliever Seth Allen (Springfield, Mass.) worked his way out of a bases loaded jam with one out by producing a 1-2-3 double play to get out of the inning unscathed. The Rams would get a two-out baserunner in the ninth, but couldn't get him across the plate as Allen recorded a six-out save.
Walsh picked up his third win of the season on the bump, allowing two earned runs on five hits over seven innings. Connelly took the loss from Framingham, allowing five earned on nine hits with five strikeouts, also in seven innings.
Cooper Bigelow (Leominster, Mass.) recorded three hits to lead all players on the afternoon, while Miller, Palatino, and Ambrosino each had two hits for their respective teams.
The Lancers and Rams will return to action tomorrow for games two and three of their series at Bowditch Field. First pitches are slated for 1 p.m. and 3 p.m.