AMHERST, Mass. – The Amherst College baseball team celebrated Senior Day with a 6-5 walk-off victory over Middlebury in the second game of their New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) doubleheader at Memorial Field.
Middlebury took the opening game of the day 2-1, meaning that the Mammoths (16-14-1, 6-6 NESCAC) were eliminated from postseason contention before the conclusion of the three-game series.
The Panthers (23-10, 7-5 NESCAC) will be a part of next weekend's NESCAC baseball tournament, which will take place at Colby College.
Before the opening game of the day, Amherst celebrated the careers of the Class of 2019. Mike Dow, Nick Nardone, Matt Santos, Davis Brown, Chase Henley, Wilson Taylor and Andrew Ferrero were honored, and Chris Collins, a former teammate who passed away last March, was remembered.
Together this group has compiled a record of 84-56-1 and a aNESCAC record of 29-18. They have posted a 9-3 record against rivals Williams College and last year captured the NESCAC championship and earned a trip to the NCAA Tournament.
Game 2: Amherst 6, Middlebury 5
Amherst loaded the bases with nobody out in the bottom of the ninth and Severino Simeone '20 delivered a single to left center to score Nardone and win the game for Amherst, who recorded 13 hits and did not make an error in the field to conclude the season.
Kai Terada Herzer '21 went 4-5 with two runs scored and Nardone and Henley had two hits apiece, as did designated hitter Will Murphy '20.
The Mammoths opened up a 3-0 lead with single runs in the first three innings, but fell behind when the Panthers put up a four-spot in the top of the fourth.
Henley doubled in Terada-Herzer to open the scoring in the first and Joe Palmo '21 took a bases-loaded walk in the second, though the Mammoths left the bases loaded against Middlebury starter Colin Waters, who struck out three in two and a third innings.
Henley scored the third run of the game on a balk, but Middlebury scored four runs on three hits in the next half inning, with Henry Strmecki and Andrew Gough each delivering two-run singles.
Murphy and Terada-Herzer scored in the sixth to reclaim the lead for Amherst, aided by another balk by the Panther's pitching staff, but in the top of the eighth Alan Guild doubled and eventually tied the game on a passed ball.
In the ninth, the Mammoths got to Middlebury closer George Goldstein (1-2), who allowed three hits and a walk without recording an out.
First year Sachin Nambiar (1-1) recorded his first collegiate win with a scoreless ninth inning. Taylor tossed the first three and two-thirds innings, with Dow bridging the gap between Taylor and Andrew Nagel '21, who allowed one unearned run and struck out three over three and two-thirds of relief.
Game 1: Middlebury 2, Amherst 1
Both teams were held to just four hits apiece as Brown (3-2) dueled with Middlebury first year Alex Price (4-2).
Amherst took a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the second when Nardone singled to left field with two outs to score Henley, who had led off the inning with a double.
Nardone was 2-3 for the Mammoths, the only player on either time with more than one hit in the game.
Middlebury tied the game in the third on an RBI single by Andrew Hennings, then took the lead with an RBI single up the middle by senior catcher Phil Bernstein.
Hennings was on base twice with a base hit and a walk, while Alec Ritch and Hayden Smith each went 1-3 with a run scored for the Panthers.
Price went nearly the distance, allowing four hits and two walks while striking out five over six and two-thirds. After Kyler Kopacz '21 singled through the left side with two outs in the seventh, the Panthers turned to Andrew Martinson, who got a groundout to shortstop to end the game and collect his first save of the year.
Brown took the loss after giving up just one earned run through five innings. In his relief, Carson Glazier '20 threw two perfect innings with a pair of strikeouts.