AUBURNDALE, FL – The Amherst College baseball team scored in every inning but the third during its 22-9 win over Clarkson University at Lake Myrtle Field in Auburndale, FL. Nine Amherst players had at least two hits, while the Lord Jeffs did not commit a single defensive error.
First-year Kevin Heller (Brooklyn, NY) and sophomore Max Einhorn (Scarsdale, NY) led the onslaught with five hits apiece, combining to go 10-for-13 with eight RBIs and nine runs scored. Sophomore Jose Espinosa (Ridgefield, CT) went 2-for-5 with four RBIs, while first-years Mike Samela (Westport, CT) and John Wagner (Evanston, IL) and senior Nat Pedley (Rye, NY) each had two hits and two RBIs.
Rounding out the Amherst players with multiple hits were senior Angus Schaller (Leucadia, CA), junior Will Lawton (Newton, MA) and sophomore Brian Merrigan (Holbrook, MA), who went 2-for-6, 2-for-3 and 3-for-7, respectively.
Amherst's six-run first inning included an RBI-triple by Heller and a two-RBI double by Espinosa. Heller added a two-RBI double of his own in the top of the second, which was followed by a sacrifice fly from Pedley that gave the Jeffs a 9-0 lead.
Clarkson got on the scoreboard with a two-run homer by Austin Pitkin in the bottom of the second inning. After a scoreless top of the third, the Golden Knights picked up another three runs with one swing of the bat, as Matt Holiday hit a three-run homer off starting pitcher Jeff Keenan (West Hartford, CT). Keenan struck out the next two batters to close out the inning, but he would not earn the decision in 3.1 innings of work.
Amherst chalked up another three runs in the top of the fourth inning, highlighted by a 2-RBI triple from Samela, but Clarkson punched right back with four runs in the bottom half of the frame. Sophomore Max McKenna (Lexington, MA) relieved Keenan with one out and the bases loaded and was met by a Matt Giordano three-run triple. McKenna pitched well the rest of the way, striking out six while allowing only one run in 4.2 innings of work to earn the win.
The Golden Knights were held scoreless in the final five innings, while Amherst added two runs in the fifth, sixth and seventh innings before adding one in the eighth and three in the ninth. First-year Hayden Metz (Ridgefield, CT) pitched a scoreless ninth inning for Amherst.
Heller has gone 12-for-15 (.800) in his first four collegiate games, while Amherst (3-1) is averaging 14.0 runs per outing. The Lord Jeffs return to action Wednesday for a 12:30 p.m. matchup with Endicott College at Chain Lakes Stadium in Winter Haven, FL.