Nighthawks, Bulldogs Split Friday Doubleheader

Nighthawks, Bulldogs Split Friday Doubleheader

FRANKLIN, Mass. - The Bulldogs pieced together a six-run inning to win game one while the Nighthawks responded in an extra-innings victory in game two, forcing a split of Friday's New England Collegiate Conference doubleheader between the Newbury Nighthawks and Dean Bulldogs.

Game One: Dean 8 - Newbury 2

Tied at 2-2 heading for the bottom of the sixth, the Dean Bulldogs exploded for six runs, pulling away from the Newbury Nighthawks in the first game of the doubleheader, taking an 8-2 win.

Bulldogs sophomore Brian Hadden (Newburyport, Mass.) batted 3-for-4 with two RBIs and a run scored. Junior Andrew Dirito (Plymouth, Mass.) finished 1-for-4 for a pair of RBIs. Sophomore Landon Fish (New Port Richie, Fla.) went 1-for-3 with an RBI double.

Nighthawks junior Brett Cabral (Plymouth, Mass.) finished 2-for-3, both doubles and a run scored. Junior Dante Serino (Palm Beach Gardens, Fla.) went 1-for-3 with an RBI while classmate Christopher Tran (Nantucket, Mass.) finished 1-for-2 with a double.

The Nighthawks took an early 2-0 lead on an RBI single by Serino and a bases loaded walk to junior Nick Dorazio (Oxford, Conn.) in the second inning. Dean tied the game in the bottom of the fifth on Dorito's two-run single to left field.

In the bottom of the sixth, Dean took their first lead on Fish's double to center field to take a 3-2 advantage. Dean broke the game open with a run-scoring single to take a 4-2 lead, followed by Hadden and his two-run single to right for a 6-2 lead. The Bulldogs added two more runs on a sacrifice fly and wild pitch to take the eventual six-run win.

Dean junior Jason Buttone (Derby, Conn.) pitched a complete game, allowing two earned runs on four hits, striking out eight. Buttone moves to 3-1 with the win. Nighthawks junior Mark Travers (Norwood, Mass.) went six innings, taking the loss to fall to 1-5.

Game Two: Newbury 9 - Dean 8 (Final - 8 Innings)

The Nighthawks needed an extra inning in the second game of the doubleheader as Newbury forced a split of Friday's doubleheader against Dean, winning 9-8 in eight innings.

Nighthawks junior Dante Serino finished 4-for-5, all singles, with an RBI and run scored. Junior Christopher Tran went 2-for-3, including a triple and three RBIs. Brett Cabral finished 1-for-4 with two RBIs while sophomore Brian Cipolla (Cranston, R.I.) went 1-for-5 with two RBIs.

Bulldogs sophomore Landon Fish batted 2-for-3 with a pair of doubles, an RBI, and a run scored. Sophomore Bryce Reilly (Dover, N.H.) went 1-for-1 with the game-tying RBI double. Brian Hadden went 1-for-4 with a double while freshman Matthew Troy (Norwalk, Conn.) batted 1-for-2 with a double.

Dean trailed 8-6 in the bottom of the seventh and started the inning with a fly out and strikeout. The two-out, game-tying rally began with Fish doubling to right-center field. A Nighthawks error would continue the game and Dean cashed in, scoring on a wild pitch, followed by Reilly's double to tie the game 8-8.

In the top of the eighth, much like Dean in the previous inning, the Nighthawks started with a groundout and strikeout. The eventual game-winning rally began with a Serino infield single, followed by a walk.

It was a Bulldogs error that would be costly, as the throwing mishap allowed Serino to score from second base to give Newbury a 9-8 lead.

Nighthawks sophomore Ronald Zabala (Peabody, Mass.) closed out the game, striking out the side in the bottom of the eighth, as the Nighthawks split the two-game set with a one-run victory.

Zabala went three innings for the Nighthawks, allowing two unearned runs, on two hits with five strikeouts. The win is the first of his career as he improves to 1-1 this season. Bulldogs sophomore Alex Belanger (Southbridge, Mass.) falls to 2-3, taking the loss in his two innings.

The split in the doubleheader moves the Nighthawks to 6-20 (3-9 NECC) while the Bulldogs go to 9-22 (6-6 NECC).

Newbury returns to play on Tuesday with a non-conference game at Gordon College. First pitch is set for 3:30 p.m.