NEW LONDON, N.H. – Castleton captured the first two games of a home-and-home, North Atlantic Conference series with Colby-Sawyer this afternoon, posting a come-from-behind 10-7 victory in game one before taking down the Chargers 9-0 in the finale at Kelsey Field.
The Spartans outhit the opposition 20-9 and captured the doubleheader sweep, despite making six errors this afternoon. Castleton has won six straight games and eight of its last nine, as the club improved to 14-9 overall and 8-2 in the conference with today's efforts. Colby-Sawyer, meanwhile, drops to 8-10 on the year and 5-5 in NAC play.
The Chargers jumped out to an early, 7-1 lead in game one, but the Spartans fought back and scored nine runs over the final four innings of play, including three in the top of the ninth, to secure a 10-7, comeback victory.
Conner Johnson had a rough outing in his third start of the season, giving up seven runs (five earned) with five strikeouts scattered over four innings. Aaron Smith turned in his best performance of the year with 3.1 innings of shutout relief, while Michael LaBeau captured his second win of the year after throwing 2.1 scoreless innings in relief.
Chris Mitchell Jr. took a no-decision after delivering a solid performance for Colby-Sawyer. The junior went 6.1 innings with five runs allowed (four earned) from just six hits. Andrew Carbone took the loss after giving up five runs in 2.2 innings of work, while Joe Scurto picked up a pair of outs in his third appearance of the year.
Offensively, Jim Buckley had a big game at the plate, going 3-for-4 with two RBIs and three runs scored. Nick Swim went 3-for-4 with a double and two runs scored, while Zach Bahan provided his first long ball of the year. For the Chargers, Nathan Frongillo collected three hits and drove in three runs, while Jeff Dunn and Brendan Thurber produced two RBIs apiece.
Colby-Sawyer got off to a quick start with seven runs in the first four innings of play to capture a 7-1 lead. The Spartans finally answered in the top of the sixth with a pair of runs to make it 7-3. Bahan led off the frame with a solo shot to left before Buckley and Mitchell Caron reached base safely. After Buckley moved to third with a stolen base, Nick Patierne brought him home with a sacrifice fly to center to cut the away side's deficit to four.
Castleton continued to rally in the following frame and manufactured four more runs to tie the game at seven. With two on and one out, Dan Errico started the scoring with an RBI single to center. Two batters later, Buckley drove home the second run of the frame before he stole second and reached third on an error, which allowed Pat Mumford to come home. Buckley eventually scored the game-tying run that forced extra innings thanks to a balk.
After a scoreless eighth, the Spartans kept the bats alive and claimed a 10-7 lead with three runs in the top of the ninth. Buckley was once again in the middle of it, starting off the frame with an RBI single to left. Patierne provided his second run-scoring sacrifice fly of the day before Dillon Benham's RBI single to right sealed the come-from-behind, 10-7 victory.
Castleton carried the momentum from the opening contest into game two, as Luke Salerno tossed a complete game shutout to lead the club to the doubleheader sweep with an 9-0 victory.
The junior right hander was near untouchable, tossing seven innings of two-hit baseball with just one walk allowed to notch his third win of the season. His counterpart, Mike Bowse, took the loss after allowing six runs (four earned) with three strikeouts in five innings pitched.
Swim carried the Spartan lineup in game two, going 3-for-4 at the plate to push his season average to .396. The senior shortstop finished the game with a double, three RBIs and one run scored. Deagan Poland drove in one run and scored another two, while Benham went 1-for-3 at the plate with two runs scored.
Castleton wasted little time to jump in front, as Swim ripped an RBI double to center in the top of the first to plate the first run of the game. The Spartans tacked on three more runs in the next frame to push their lead to four.
Bowse was able to silence the visiting bats in the third and fourth frames, but in the top of the fifth, Castleton was at it once again, producing two runs from three hits to go in front, 6-0. Swim started the inning with a single to right before advancing to third on a failed pickoff attempt. He later scored on a wild pitch before Bahan recorded and RBI double to give the squad a six-run lead.
The Spartans tacked on three more in the final two innings of play, and that was more than enough for Salerno, who allowed just one base runner in the last three innings en route to a a 9-0 victory.
Castleton and Colby-Sawyer close out the four-game, home-and-home series tomorrow afternoon when the Spartans host the Chargers for a doubleheader at Spartan Field beginning at 2 pm.