AURORA, N.Y. – The Ithaca College baseball team will head into the Empire 8 Conference Tournament on a five-game winning streak and a 25-14 overall record after the Bombers defeated Wells College, 9-5, on Saturday afternoon in IC's regular season finale.
Saturday's contest also marked the second time that head coach George Valesente squared off against his son, David, who is the head coach at Wells. The Bomber won last year's game, 9-8, at Freeman Field.
For the 17th time this season, the Bombers eclipsed double-digit hits in a game with 17 on the day. Five of those went for extra bases, including home runs by juniors Matt Carey and Jake Generali. The Bombers are 16-1 this season when they reach 10 or more hits in a game.
Ithaca jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the top of the first inning and never looked back. After the first two outs of the game were recorded, junior Webb Little was walked and then scored on a double by classmate Andrew Bailey. Two batters later, junior Adam Gallagher drove in Bailey with a base hit through the right side.
The Bombers extended their lead to 5-0 in the fourth inning as senior Domenic Boresta drove in two runs with a double to right field and then scored on a base hit by Generali to cap off the inning. Carey and freshman Jack Lynch scored on the Boresta double after they led off the frame with singles.
Wells got on the board in the bottom of the fourth on a lead-off home run, but the Bombers answered with a round-tripper of their own from Carey in the sixth.
After Wells scored another run in the bottom of the sixth, Generali stroked his solo homer in the seventh to put IC back up by five runs at 7-2.
The Express once again responded in the bottom half of the seventh on a double to make the score 7-3. In the top of the eight, sophomore Chris Dietz drove in Carey with a base hit and then Lynch brought home junior John Peterson in the ninth to give IC a 9-3 advantage. Peterson reached base on a pinch hit single.
Wells capped off the scoring in the non-conference contest with two runs in the bottom of the ninth on a sacrifice fly and base hit in back-to-back plate appearances, which accounted for the final score of 9-5.
Carey, Lynch and junior Sam Little each notched three hits in the win, while Generali had two.
Junior Jake Binder started the game for IC and tossed two scoreless innings with a pair of strikeouts. Senior Robby Buffis picked up his first win of the season with a perfect inning of relief, as he fanned two of the three batters he faced.
Senior Tyler Hill tossed two innings and struck out one, while junior Emmett Dunn, sophomore Trevor Rumsey, senior Jack Morello and junior Matt Eiel each hurled one inning in relief.
The Bombers travel to Hoboken, N.J. next Thursday, May 10, for their first round game against St. John Fisher College at 2:30 p.m.