Home Runs Propel Yale to 10-4 Victory at UMBC

Charlie Neil (photo by Sam Rubin '95, Yale Sports Publicity)

BALTIMORE, Md. – The Yale baseball team completed a three-game sweep of Maryland-Baltimore County this afternoon, hammering the host Retrievers by a score of 10-4 at the Baseball Factory Field at UMBC. Junior shortstop Trey Rallis and sophomore outfielder Charlie Neil each hit three-run home runs in a seven-run third inning that gave the Bulldogs a commanding early lead, while freshman lefthander Christopher O’Hare made his first collegiate start on the mound, scattering five hits over six innings to earn the victory.

Yale moves to 3-0 with the win, while UMBC falls to 0-3.

The Bulldogs’ offense picked up 10 runs on just nine hits, but half of those hits went for extra bases and Yale also worked eight walks and benefited from a sacrifice fly and three hit batsmen. Rallis and junior second baseman Gant Elmore each had two hits, while junior designated hitter Andrew Moore drove in three runs.

“Trey and Charlie had the biggest hits, but everybody in the lineup was a tough out today,” said John Stuper, the Mazzuto Family Head Coach for Baseball at Yale.

On the hill, O’Hare (1-0) allowed just five singles In his six innings of work, giving up two earned runs while striking out five Retrievers and walking three. Sophomore Greg Lyons pitched a perfect seventh inning for the Bulldogs, junior Alex Young hurled a scoreless eighth and freshman Avery Lanman worked the ninth in his collegiate debut.

“Chris O’Hare was outstanding today,” said Stuper of his rookie southpaw. “He was hitting the strike zone consistently with all of his pitches.”

UMBC struck in the first inning, as a Mike Conlon beat out an infield hit and stole second to move into scoring position. A groundout by Max Himmelstein, the second out of the inning, moved Conlon to third base and a base hit to right field by Bryan Russo brought him out with the game’s first run.

The 1-0 lead was short-lived, however, as an Elmore single started a big third inning for Yale. Junior third baseman Andy Megee followed with a single of his own, and Rallis came up next and cleared the bases with his first home run of 2010. Two batters later, sophomore catcher Ryan Brenner roped a double to centerfield and Moore and sophomore outfielder Zach Tobolowsky walked to load the bases with just one out. After a pitching change for UMBC, junior outfielder Andrew Kolmar knocked Brenner home with a groundout, and Neil then cleared the bases with the Bulldogs’ second three-run roundtripper of the inning.

A 7-1 lead was more than enough for O’Hare, who breezed through the bottom of the third, but Yale was not done putting runs on the board. Senior first baseman Trygg Larsson-Danforth started a two-out rally in the top of the fourth with a walk, and Brenner worked another free pass to keep the inning alive. Moore was up next, and he cashed in on the RBI opportunity with a double to plate both Larsson-Danforth and Brenner.

Larsson-Danforth drew a one-out walk to start up the Yale offense again in the top of the sixth inning, and Brenner was then hit by a pitch. Both runners moved up 90 feet on a wild pitch, and Moore was once again the beneficiary as he drove Larsson-Danforth home with a sacrifice fly.

The Retrievers would get to O’Hare in their half of the sixth inning, as Casey Medairy picked up an RBI with a base hit, but Yale’s freshman southpaw struck out Curtis Schickner to end the inning and exit his first career start in line for the victory with a comfortable 10-2 lead.

UMBC would tack on two runs in the ninth inning, but the Bulldogs’ offensive outburst was more than enough as the Yale wrapped up a three-game sweep of the host Retrievers with a 10-4 win.

Conlon was the home team’s offensive leader with a 3-for-4 day at the plate, while Russo had a pair of RBI. Marty Zawacki (0-1) made the start for UMBC and allowed six earned runs and five hits over the first 2.1 innings. He also walked four batters while striking out two. Sean Swetnam was the Retrievers most effective hurler on the afternoon, allowing no hits and one earned run over the final three innings.

The 3-0 Bulldogs will head further south to continue their spring trip, with a stretch of eight games at the RussMatt Central Florida Invitational beginning tomorrow against the University of Rhode Island. First pitch from Lake Myrtle Park in Auburndale, Fla. is scheduled for 4:30 p.m.

report filed by Drew M. Kingsley, Yale Sports Publicity

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