Waterville, Maine – The Trinity College Bantams took a 4-1 New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) East victory over the Bowdoin College Polar Bears to open baseball conference play on Friday afternoon at Colby College's Coombs Field. The Bantams are now 10-2 overall with their seventh win in a row, dropping the Polar Bears to 0-11-1. The teams will complete the three-game series tomorrow with a noon doubleheader. A wet field at Bowdoin forced the series to move to Colby's turf field.
The Bantams took a 2-0 lead on a double off the bat of junior Matt Koperniak (Adams, Mass.) in the top of the second. The Polar Bears surrendered two more runs in the fourth. Sophomore Robbie Cronin (Wellesley Hills, Mass.) tagged an RBI single up the middle to drive in a run from second. Senior 2B Ben Reinisch (Troy, N.Y.) added an RBI single to push the lead to four. With only one out and the bases loaded, Bowdoin's Connor Lee escaped the jam with a strikeout and groundout to end the inning. In the bottom of the ninth, Bowdoin spoiled the Trinity shutout with a bases loaded RBI by Eric Mah.
Trinity had multiple players with multi-hit games. Koperniak went 2-for-5, while Reinisch, sophomore Eric Thronson (McLean, Va.) , and Cronin all went 2-for-4. Koperniak led both teams with two RBIs. Brandon Lopez, Brendan O'Neil, Nick Merrill, Colby Joncas, and Ben Suski all had hits. Merrill was left stranded three times and scored one run. Joncas threw out Koperniak on an attempt to steal second. Junior Andrew Andrew DeRoche (North Reading, Mass.) earned the win with 7.1 innings of work and three hits allowed. He walked five and struck out three. Junior Alex Herbst (Clarendon Hills, Ill.) and sophomore Justin Olson (Avon, Conn.) pitched the final 1.2 innings combined. Olson had one strikeout. Lee pitched six innings, allowing eight hits and four runs, while striking out five. Colby Lewis pitched the final three innings and allowed three hits with one strikeout.