NEWPORT, R.I. (April 7, 2019) -- Salve Regina University baseball met a familiar foe in New England College for the first time since 2011, and the Seahawks jumped out to a 5-0 lead before the Pilgrims narrowed the gap to 5-4 with four runs in the seventh, then Salve Regina (15-8) cushioned its lead with five in the eighth for a 10-4 final.
The Seahawks lead the all-time series with the Pilgrims, 41-4, which included over two decades of matchups in the Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC) before New England College (15-8) exited the league in 2011.
Salve Regina lefty starter Michael Viveiros (No. Scitutate, R.I.) tossed six straight zeroes on the board in the visitor's frames while stranding plenty of Pilgrims on the bases (seven through the first six). The Seahawks put a single run on the board in their first at bats against Pilgrim lefty Dylan Champagne (Newtown, Conn.) as Madden Ward (Clinton, Conn.) led off with a double and stole third before scoring on a long sac fly to left center by Salve Regina senior Zack Smith (New Canaan, Conn.). Smith, who hit four homeruns yesterday in a split with Western New England, and had seven roundtrippers since last Sunday, was robbed of his eighth dinger in eight days by a great grab from New England College centerfielder Christian Aybar (Pawtucket, R.I.).
Smith had another sacrifice fly in the fifth, but was held hitless (0-3, two sacrifice flies) for the first time since opening day on February 22 in Hoboken, N.J., against Stevens Tech, ending his hit streak at 21 games. Betts added an RBI single in the fifth to score Dylan Ketch (Clinton, Conn.) for a 5-0 advantage.
In the top of the seventh, sophomore Joe Maestu (Naples, Fla.) homered to left field to get the Pilgrims on the board. Evan Delaney (Hadley, Mass.) and Xavier Nunez (Lawrence, Mass.) added RBI singles to cut the deficit to a single run, 5-4.
After the Seahawks went down 1-2-3 in the bottom of the seventh, Dean Borders (Danvers, Mass.) came on in relief of his classmate Viveiros and got his own 1-2-3 in the top of the eighth with a strikeout included.
Betts led off the Seahawk eighth with a single up the middle before a pair of walks loaded the bases. Pinch-hitter Brett McAllister (Tewksbury, Mass.) delivered a two-run single and advanced to second on the throw. Senior Colton Eremian (Boca Raton, Fla.), starting his first game as an outfielder, doubled down the left field line to bring in two more runs for the Seahawks. Eremian moved to third on a wild pitch and scored the 10th run for Salve Regina on a single by Ketch.
Borders allowed a single and a walk in the ninth, but stranded those Pilgrims at the corners for his first career save. Viveiros improves to 2-0 on the season while Champagne slips to 2-1.
Salve Regina is back in action on Tuesday at Johnson & Wales University (3:30 p.m.).