Sports, Spring, Baseball

Eagles Avoid Elimination, Defeat Nicholls State 14–6

One thing is for sure through two games of the Tuscaloosa regional: Boston College baseball brought its bats to the Sewell-Thomas Baseball Stadium this weekend. With 14 runs in Saturday’s contest against Nicholls State, the Eagles have now posted a whopping 24 combined runs in just two regional games. 

After a promising, yet devastating 4–3 walk-off loss to No. 16 national seed Alabama on Friday, Nicholls State (34–24, 15–9 Southland Conference) quickly shifted its focus towards the Eagles (35–19, 16–14 Atlantic Coast). But behind five home runs and 16 total hits—Joe Vetrano accounting for two home runs and four hits—BC kept their season alive with a 14–6 victory over the Colonels on Saturday.

In the second inning, Joe Vetrano led off the top of the frame with a fly ball double to left field. Nick Wang, on the first pitch from Nicholls State’s starter Devin Desandro, then laced a line drive over the shortstop’s head, and Vetrano sprinted around third, intending to score. On a well-executed 7-5-3 cutoff play, from left fielder Garrett Felix to third baseman Austin Cain to catcher Kaden Amundson, Vetrano was thrown out at home, preventing the game’s first run.

It did not take much longer for the Eagles to score, though. While the Colonels’ defense saved one run, Vince Cimini, one batter later singled up the middle, putting two runners on base for the Eagles. On a hanging slider, Sam McNulty crushed a fly ball toward the scoreboard in left field, and cleared the bases with a three-run home run.

Nicholls State responded quickly, though, tying the game with a run in the bottom of the second inning and two in the third. With a few base hits and effective baserunning, the Colonels capitalized on their scoring opportunities and scored three of four runners in scoring position in the second and third.

BC starter and All-ACC Second Team pitcher Chris Flynn left the mound in the bottom of the third inning due to an injury, but Henry Leake rose to the occasion, throwing four scoreless innings out of the bullpen, eventually earning the win for BC.

From the fourth inning onwards, the Eagles offense was relentless. Vetrano hit a solo homer in the fourth to give the Eagles a 4–3 lead, and in the fifth, BC added four additional runs behind home runs from Daniel Baruch and Nick Wang. Baruch added another RBI to the total with a walk after BC batted through the lineup, and after five innings, the Eagles held a commanding 9–3 advantage.

BC added four runs in the seventh inning, which were just insurance runs for what was already a comfortable lead. Patrick Roche lined an RBI single into left, and with two baserunners on, Vetrano hit his fourth home run in two games over the right field fence, and it was 13-3 in BC’s favor.

Freshman A.J. Colarusso earned the save for the Eagles, dealing in the last three innings of the game which secured the win for the Eagles and kept their postseason hopes alive.

June 4, 2023