Massachusetts Daily Collegian

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

Massachusetts Daily Collegian

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

Massachusetts Daily Collegian

UMass baseball defeats Stonehill at home

Scott LeSieur’s pitching leads Minutemen to victory
Kalina Kornacki/Daily Collegian (2023)

The Massachusetts baseball team welcomed Stonehill to Amherst on Wednesday afternoon, greeting the team with an onslaught of runs early in the game en route to a 10-6 victory. Backed by a strong start from Scott LeSieur on the mound, the Minutemen picked up their 12th win of the season.

LeSieur gave UMass six innings of shutout work, recording a season-high seven strikeouts and a season-low zero walks in his outing. The senior southpaw gave the Minutemen exactly what they needed: a stable start.

“I think it’s a great example, that [LeSieur] goes out there and competes his butt off all the time, and he’s got the right mentality all the time, whether his stuff is on that day or if he’s scuffling,” UMass head coach Matt Reynolds said.

After setting down the Skyhawks 1-2-3 in the first inning, LeSieur pitched stress free for the rest of his outing. The Minutemen offense padded on four runs in the first inning.

“It means a lot when you’re out there and you know that [Reynolds] and your teammates kind of have your back and let you go do your thing out there,” LeSieur said.

Carrying an 8-1 lead into the top of the eighth inning, Reynolds called in reliever Mikey Jensen out of the bullpen to bridge the Minutemen (12-30, 4-14 Atlantic 10) into the ninth inning. Jensen, who has been one of UMass’ strongest arms out of the pen this year, faltered in his 0.2 innings of work, walking three batters and giving up four more Stonehill (10-32, 6-18 Northeast Conference) runs. Renn Lints was the next arm to come out of the pen after Jensen, and although he wasn’t perfect, he got the Minutemen out of the inning only allowing one more run.

With just a two-run cushion, UMass looked to grab some insurance before heading into the ninth, and a surprise contributor stepped up to the plate in freshman Jack Peters. Starting his third game of the season, Peters delivered the biggest hit of the day with the bases loaded. The second basemen drove a grounder up the middle to drive in two runs, giving UMass a four-run lead heading into the ninth. This hit was Peters’ second of the day, with the first also being his first career collegiate hit.

Jackson Harrigan came out of the bullpen to close the game out for the Minutemen.

UMass got off to a wicked start at the plate, its four first-inning runs drove Stonehill starter Max Brulport out of the game before he could get three outs.

The first three at-bats of the game culminated in three runs for the Minutemen. Kevin Skagerlind walked, then after stealing second base, he found home as Will MacLean hit an RBI single.

Next up was Nolan Tichy, who unleashed on a curveball, sending it over the left field fence and into the hedges for a two-run home run, his team-leading 10th of the season.

Tichy was the catalyst for the UMass lineup Wednesday, going 3-5 with four RBIs. He added an RBI double in the second inning and an RBI single in the fifth.

“Just sticking with my approach I’ve been going with the last few weeks,” Tichy said of his at-bats. “Yesterday was kind of a tough day for the team and for me, so it was nice to get off to a good start today and carry it on the rest of the game.”

UMass looks to roll this momentum into the weekend when they take on Fordham in a weekend series in the Bronx. First pitch is slated for 3 p.m. on Friday.

Matt Skillings can be reached at [email protected] and followed on Twitter @matt_skillings.

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