Though they waited until the final inning of Sunday afternoon’s match-up with Rutgers, the Boston College bats finally came alive in the Snowbird Classic, as the Eagles downed the Scarlet Knights 11-6 after falling to Minnesota and Indiana on Friday and Saturday.
Friday afternoon’s contest against Minnesota never got on track for Boston College, as the Eagles gave up five runs in the first two innings, en route to a 14-1 loss to the Golden Gophers. BC recorded only three hits in the game and scored their lone run in the bottom of the ninth on a sacrifice fly from redshirt sophomore Connor Bacon. Eagles’ starter Jacob Stevens lasted only an inning and a third and gave up five earned runs in his first loss of the season.
Though Saturday’s game against #20 Indiana was closer, BC’s offense could get nothing going against IU starter Pauly Milto, who threw a complete-game, four-hit shutout in the 4-0 Boston College loss. Milto surrendered no walks and struck out eight Eagles’ hitters in his second win of the season. Taking the loss for Boston College was junior Dan Metzdorf who threw well against the very good Hoosier lineup, surrendering only three runs and no walks, while striking out four. Unfortunately in his second loss of the season, Metzdorf was afforded very little in the way of offensive support.
Sunday’s game looked to be much of the same for the Eagles, as Rutgers shot out to an early 3-0 lead through two innings. But after holding the Scarlet Knights scoreless in the third, Boston College scored a pair of runs in the fourth to cut the lead to one. Rutgers responded the following inning, scoring three runs of their own, pushing their lead to four. However, that would be all they would get in the game, as Zach Stromberg, Sean Hughes, Will Hesslink, Carmen Giampetruzzi, and Thomas Lane came on in relief of starter Brian Rapp and held the Scarlet Knights scoreless in the final four innings. During that time, Boston College added runs in the sixth and seventh, to make the score 6-4. After being blanked in the eighth, the Eagles batted around in the ninth and scored seven runs to gain an 11-6 advantage. Lane shut door on Rutgers in the bottom of the ninth and Boston College avoided the weekend sweep. Junior Jake Alu and sophomore Brian Dempsey led BC’s offensive charge on Sunday, recording four hits each, with Dempsey driving in three runs. Also having a nice day at the plate were Gian Martellini, Scott Braren, Jack Cunningham, and freshman Chris Galland, as each recorded a pair of hits.
Some Quick Thoughts:
It was nice to see Boston College rebound on Sunday with a win, and more specifically, it was heartening to see that the team continued to fight to the last out, scoring seven seven runs in the inning, after entering the ninth trailing by two. However, the first two games of the Snowbird Classic were a bit concerning. On Friday, the Gopher’s scored 14 runs on 16 hits, with the BC pitching staff only giving up four walks on the day. What means is that it wasn’t as though the Eagles were giving up free bases left and right and then Minnesota would have a timely hit to score some runs. Instead, it means that the Golden Gopher’s manufactured their runs by putting the ball in play. A lot. Granted, those days happen throughout the course of a season where pitchers will throw strikes and hit their spots and for whatever reason, the opposing lineup just continually finds holes on the field. What’s more concerning to me is that while this was happening versus Minnesota, and to a lesser extent Indiana, the BC offense could not get anything going. They registered seven hits combined in those two contests and scored one run. Though they did swing the bats better today, especially in the ninth, that lack of production is not going to cut it when ACC play opens up in two weeks. All in all, I think this weekend was a missed opportunity for Boston College, as taking at least two of three from a Power-5 conference would’ve been a huge boost to this team early in the season, and would have looked good on an NCAA resume in late-May. Either way, BC will have a few days back home to try to correct some of its issues before heading to North Carolina next weekend to start their annual spring break trip.