Twenty-two days ago, then-No. 14 Boston College baseball rolled into Storrs, Conn. and took down then-No. 20 Connecticut 6–3, asserting its dominance as New England’s top baseball program for the time being.
But on Wednesday, No. 15 UConn (27–10, 4–2 Big East) didn’t just return the favor against No. 20 BC (24–12, 9–9 Atlantic Coast)—the Huskies stomped all over the Eagles to the tune of a 12–1 blowout. The loss came amid a stretch in which BC has lost its last two ACC series.
“I just saw frustration tonight, you know what I mean?” BC head coach Mike Gambino said. “So that’s the thing that we got to draw from. … We got to go back to being who we are.”
BC couldn’t throw strikes all game, issuing 11 walks to the Huskies’ three—a disparity that marked the difference maker, according to Gambino.
“That was the story of the night,” Gambino said.
Despite a clean opening inning, BC starter Ian Murphy lacked control and recorded four walks over 2.1 innings pitched. The graduate right-hander issued leadoff walks in both the second and third inning, resulting in a run scored in each.
The Eagles notched back-to-back singles to open the bottom of the third inning, and Patrick Roche capitalized with an RBI single to cut the deficit to 2–1. UConn, however, caught Peter Burns in a rundown past third base to record its second out of the inning.
“We probably have to make the stop a little bit earlier,” Gambino said. “But it’s just, it was just kind of like a tricky play all the way.”
Though the Eagles loaded the bases after Cameron Leary drew a walk in the following at-bat, Nick Wang couldn’t cash in and flied out to deep center field, ending BC’s best continuous scoring threat of the game.
UConn needed little time to restore its two-run edge, as Bryan Padilla launched a solo home run in the first at-bat of the top of the fourth inning. Facing Luke Delongchamp, the Huskies continued to pile it on and scored two more runs off three hits to make it 5–1.
Walks, BC’s Achilles’ heel all evening, returned to bite the Eagles again in the top of the fifth inning.
In to relieve Delongchamp in the top of the fifth inning, southpaw Matthew Nunan retired the first two batters he faced, and the inning appeared to be over.
Instead, Nunan issued back-to-back, two-out walks, and Ben Huber took advantage, roping a double into left field to put UConn ahead 7–1.
The Huskies added five more runs over the next two innings, making it six straight innings featuring a Huskies’ run.
BC faced one final scoring opportunity in the bottom of the seventh inning, loading the bases for Wang. But the Eagles failed to convert—just as they failed to do all game—allowing the contest to mercifully end via the 10-run rule for just the second time this season for BC.
“It’s 56 games,” Gambino said. “A game like this is going to come up. So yes, it’s an outlier. But, I do think we have to draw some things from this.”