April 21, 2001
AMHERST, MA - The Amherst College baseball team used a complete-game pitching performance by junior right-hander Jeff Leduc (Pittsfield, MA) in the opener and rallied from a 7-0 deficit in the nightcap to sweep visiting NESCAC rival Wesleyan University in a NESCAC doubleheader on Saturday, taking the first game 2-0 and the second 14-11. The Jeffs improved to 12-8 overall and 3-1 in conference play to leapfrog Wesleyan (14-9-1/4-4) into second place in the West Division standings.
Leduc (4-0) was outstanding in game one, surrendering just two hits with seven strikeouts en route to his fourth complete-game victory of the season. After allowing a single to first baseman Dave Echeverria (Greenfield, MA) and a double to Bill Robinson (Berlin, CT) in the first inning, Leduc wiggled out of trouble-with the help of a sparkling defensive play by Amherst sophomore center fielder John Schneider (Grand Rapids, MI)-and retired 18 of the next 20 batters to seal the seven-inning win.
Meanwhile, Jeff shortstop Jordan Krall (Encino, CA) broke the scoreless tie when he led off the bottom of the fifth inning with a double, advanced to third on a fly out by Schneider and trotted home on a clutch RBI double by junior catcher J.R. Drabick (Lebanon, NH). Senior left fielder Dave Siegle (Falmouth, ME) then drilled his second home run of the season-a solo shot to lead off the sixth inning-to add an insurance run and set the final score at 2-0. Amherst managed just four hits off Wesleyan junior starter Will James (Wallingford, CT), who went the distance but fell to 3-2 with the hard-luck loss.
Game two was everything the opener wasn't-a marathon affair that featured nine errors, nine unearned runs and six pitching changes. Nevertheless, Amherst was able to come from behind and squeak out a 14-11 win after trailing 7-0 early on. The rally was fueled by a trio of home runs by the seventh, eighth and ninth hitters in the Amherst lineup, Krall, Schneider and Drabick.
The Jeffs cut into the lead with four runs in the third inning off Wesleyan sophomore starter Rob Guglielmino (Madison, CT) on a leadoff homer by Schneider, an RBI single by Jarret Solomon (Simsbury, CT) and a two-run single by senior third baseman Ryan Whitmarsh (Dalton, MA). Wesleyan responded with two runs in the fourth inning off Amherst sophomore reliever Chris Vecsey (Madison, NY) when senior left fielder Winsor Schmidt (Veradale, WA) doubled to right center field, scoring third baseman Dave Bushnell (South Dennis, MA) and Robinson to push the Cardinals' lead to 9-4.
Amherst would tie the game in the fifth with a five-run rally, culminating with a two-run homer by Krall and a game-tying RBI single by Drabick, who finished three-for-four with three RBIs and two runs scored in the nightcap. From there, Jeffs' senior reliever Kevin Downes (Pound Ridge, NY) shut Wesleyan down for the next three innings, while Whitmarsh pushed across the go-ahead run with an RBI single in the sixth, scoring Solomon from second base.
Amherst added four insurance runs in the seventh and eighth innings, including a two-run homer by Drabick in the seventh. Wesleyan threatened with a pair of runs in the ninth, but it was too little, too late as Downes (1-1) picked up his first win of the season with four solid innings of relief.
The Jeffs pounded out 12 hits in the nightcap, with a trio of two-hit games by Whitmarsh, Krall and Schneider. Whitmarsh and Krall also finished with three RBIs each, in addition to Drabick's breakout offensive performance. Meanwhile, Wesleyan second baseman Jim Barletto (Hull, MA) and Bushnell each doubled, drove in a run and finished with two hits for the Cardinals.
Aside from Vecsey and Downes, first-year Duncan Webb (Lynn, MA)-who drew the game-two starting assignment-and sophomore Jonah Ansell (Oak Park, IL) saw the mound for the Jeffs. Bobby Nasson (Lexington, MA), Tom Hodgman (Evanston, IL) and Dave Vanech (Providence, RI) all saw action in relief of Guglielmino for Wesleyan, with Nasson taking the loss to fall to 0-2.
The Jeffs and Cardinals clash again on Sunday afternoon at Wesleyan for another crucial NESCAC West Division matchup, starting at 1 p.m.
Game One Box Score and Play-by-Play
Game Two Box Score and Play-by-Play