PROVIDENCE, R.I. – Three newcomers batting in the lower part of the order combined for nine hits, eight RBI and three runs and the Eastern Connecticut State University baseball team scored two runs in the seventh and two in the eighth to erase a two-run deficit in a 10-8 non-conference victory over Johnson & Wales University Wednesday afternoon.
Coming off a 7-0 win over No. 1-nationally-ranked College of Wooster in its Florida final Sunday, Eastern (4-5) couldn't hold a 5-1 lead built after its first three at-bats, needing to tie the game, 8-8, with two runs in the seventh, and scoring the go-ahead runs in the eighth. Sophomore transfer first baseman Luke Broadhurst (Stafford) drove in the first run in each of those two innings and freshman third baseman Owen Marica (Haddam) the second run in each of those innings.
Batting sixth in the order, freshman catcher Matt Malcom (East Lyme) was 4-for-5 with three runs and an RBI. Batting seventh, Broadhurst had two hits and four RBI, and Marica, batting eighth, had three hits and three RBI.
Senior second baseman William Coleman (Northford) reached safely four times with three hits, scored three runs, and drove in one.
The Warriors scored three times in the top of the first on a bases-loaded walk to Coleman, wild pitch and Malcom's run-scoring infield ground ball, and moved out to a 5-1 lead by scoring two unearned runs on an outfield error on Broadhurst's fly ball.
The fourth of five pitchers, sophomore lefty Jordan Federer (Plainfield) was credited with his first career win against a loss. Federer gave up two runs on two hits, fanned six and walked one, and senior lefty Nick Rascati (Wallingford) gained his tenth career save by getting the final five outs, fanning the side in the ninth. The staff struck out a season-high 15 batters.
Leadoff hitter Colby Greenhalgh reached four times with hits and two walks, drove in three runs and scored three for Johnson & Wales (7-3).
Eastern is scheduled to open its home season Friday against Albertus Magnus College at 4 p.m.