HOLYOKE, Mass. - Blazers senior Tim Gelzenis (North Dighton, Mass.) finished the day 2-for-4, including a game-leading single in the seventh, knocking in two runs and capping off a comeback victory as the Blazers avoided a three-game sweep, defeating the Newbury Nighthawks 4-2 on Sunday afternoon at MacKenzie Stadium.
Blazers sophomore Alex Hoss (Stafford Springs, Conn.) also finished 2-for-4, both singles. All but one Blazers starter finished the game with a hit, but all nine batters managed to reach base safely at least once in the game.
Nighthawks sophomore David Center (Medford, Mass.) batted 2-for-4, both doubles, including an RBI double in the first. Senior Ian Hruniak (Lutz, Fla.) finished 1-for-4 with an RBI double in the sixth.
The Nighthawks jumped on the Blazers early as junior Justin Banks (Corona, Calif.) lined a leadoff single to left field, and then came around to score on an RBI double to the right field gap from Center to hand Newbury the 1-0 lead.
The Blazers responded in the bottom of the frame with senior Stephen Harrison (Southbury, Conn.) ripping a two-out double to left field, followed by an RBI single from senior Kyle Platner (Northfield, Mass.) to bring home Harrison and even the score at 1-1.
After four scoreless innings, the Nighthawks regained the lead in the top of the sixth as junior Matthew Peluso (Woodbridge, Ontario, Canada) knocked a leadoff single, advanced on a wild pitch, and then scored on an RBI double from Hruniak, giving Newbury a 2-1 lead.
Trailing 2-1 in the seventh, the Blazers moved back into the driver's seat with a three-run inning, ignited by back-to-back singles from Hoss and junior Ben Ross (Thompson, Conn.).
Senior Aedin Wadja (Lebanon, Conn.) laced an RBI single to left field, bringing home Hoss to tie the game at 2-2. Elms grabbed the lead as Gelzenis smacked a two-run single through the right side of the infield, plating Wadja and Ross to put the Blazers on top 4-2.
Elms sophomore Matt Plasse (Westfield, Mass.) retired the Nighthawks 1-2-3 in the eighth, and Gelzinis notched his second save of the season with two strikeouts in a perfect ninth inning to lock up the 4-2 victory.
The victory moves the Blazers to 6-11 (2-3 NECC), while the Nighthawks drop to 16-12 (5-7 NECC). The Nighthawks take Monday off before returning to action on Tuesday, traveling to Eastern Nazarene College for a 3:30 game.
Portions of this release courtesy Chris Kendrick of Elms College Athletics.