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Baseball Uses Eighth-Inning Rally to Eliminate No. 22/20 Salve Regina, 5-4

Baseball Uses Eighth-Inning Rally to Eliminate No. 22/20 Salve Regina, 5-4

Beavers Win School Record 28th Game, Stay Alive at Harwich Regional

HARWICH, Mass.—Junior Ryan Arena (Yorktown Heights, N.Y.) hit a two-out, two-run single in the bottom of the eighth inning to lift Babson College to a 5-4 win over No. 22/20 Salve Regina University in an elimination game at the NCAA Tournament Harwich Regional late Saturday night at Whitehouse Field.

Babson (28-14), which set a new school record for wins in a season, won its second elimination game of the day to keep its campaign alive. Salve Regina, which suffered a pair of losses to the Beavers in the regional, closes the year at 36-12.

Sophomore Connor Gill (Sterling, Mass.) went 2-for-3 with two runs batted in, while senior Jack Halpin (Glastonbury, Conn.), junior Mark Webber (Norwell, Mass.) and first-year Sean Harrington (Walpole, Mass.) all reached base three times in the win. Senior Ken Rotunno (East Islip, N.Y.) worked a perfect eighth inning and moved to 3-1 with the win, while junior Matt Cuneo (Ashland, Mass.) worked around a pair of walks in the ninth to record his 10th save of the year.

Juniors John Militano (Miller Place, N.Y. ) and Christian Vargas (Melbourne, Fla.) both had a pair of hits for the Seahawks. Sophomore Will Ginsberg (Sharon, Mass.) started and earned a no-decision after striking out five while allowing one run over the first 4.1 innings, while the Salve Regina bullpen gave up four earned runs and issued eight walks over the final 3.1 frames.

The Seahawks took a 1-0 lead on an RBI ground out by junior Sam Brito (Lincoln, R.I.) in the top of the second before the Green and White pulled even on Gill's RBI single in the last of the fifth. Salve Regina responded b by going back in front with three runs in the top of the sixth. Senior Hunter Sleeper (Arlington, Mass.) and Militano singled and later scored, while Vargas came through with a two-out base hit to drive in sophomore Colton Eremian (Boca Raton, Fla.) for a 4-1 advantage.

Despite not recording a hit, Babson cut its deficit to 4-3 in the bottom of the sixth as Arena scored on a wild pitch and Gill drove in Harrington with a sacrifice fly. The Beavers left the bases loaded in the seventh, but jumped in front for the first time in the eighth. Sophomore Brian McHale (Ramsey, N.J.) kept the inning alive by beating out a potential double play, Halpin drew an intentional walk, and Arena singled through the right side to drive in Gill and McHale for a 5-4 edge.

The Seahawks loaded the bases with two outs in the ninth thanks to a pair of walks and an error, but Cuneo induced a routine fly ball to left to close out the win.

Junior John Floegel (Summit, N.J.), who made his first start since May 1, gave up just one earned run on six hits over seven innings for the Green and White. Tommy Seaver (Rocky Hill, Conn.) allowed two runs on three hits and three walks in 1.2 innings, and dropped to 1-2 on the year for Salve Regina.

•    Halpin, who has hit safely in all four NCAA Tournament games, has at least one knock in 17 of the last 18 contests and needs just two hits to match the program's all-time record of 199 set by Matt Delaney '09.
•    McHale has hit safely in nine straight games and is batting .400 (8-for-20) in the regional.
•    Babson's starting pitchers have gone at least 7.0 innings in each of its four regional games, and it has used just three relievers for a total of five innings over the first four games.
•    The Beavers have put up 31 runs on 41 hits over their first four games in Harwich. Additionally, they've drawn 27 walks and swiped nine bags.