VCU outscores Huskies 24-7 over the weekend en route to series sweep
Northeastern fell to 12-10 on the season and 3-6 in the CAA with the three game weekend sweep to Virginia Commonwealth. With Andrew Leenhouts and Kevin Ferguson entering the series a combined 7-0 on the season, both getting starts, NU appeared to be in good shape. But VCU came up north and leapfrogged the Huskies in the CAA standings and delivered both pitchers their first losses on the 2012 campaign. VCU outhit NU 37 to 25 including 3 home runs for the sweep. The Huskies now face URI in a non-league matchup before they try and rebound vs James Madison and try to pull back to .500 in the CAA.
GAME 1: L 6-2
Andrew Lennhouts faced only 24 of 21 possible hitters through the first seven innings and allowed only 1 run but the Huskies couldn’t muster up any run support, even though the opportunities were there.
In the bottom of the third after tying the game at 1, the bases were loaded for Husky cleanup hitter John Leroux who proceeded to hit into a 6-4-3 double play to end the threat.
Still tied at 1 in the sixth, the Huskies had runners on second and third with one out. The runner on third Leroux was gunned out at home for out number two after breaking for the plate on an Alex McKeon ground ball to third although not forced. After a Connor Lyons bunt put runners on second and third again, Oliver Hart grounded out to short to end the inning.
After back-to-back singles with one out in the seventh, Leroux grounded into his second 6-4-3 double play on the day with a runner in scoring position to end the inning still tied.
Allowing VCU to hang around over the first seven innings proved costly, as the Rams would pounce on Leenhouts in the eighth. VCU scored 5 runs off the lefty senior including a two-run homer before Mike Hanlon came on in relief.
The Huskies responded in the bottom of the eighth with one run to cut the Ram lead 6-2 but VCU reliever Blake Bauser ended the threat and then came back out for the ninth to seal the win.
GAME 2: L 8-2
A Joey Cujas RBI single in the top of the first provided VCU with a 1-0 lead until an Aaron Barbosa RBI groundout tied the game in the bottom of the fifth.
Maki pitched well through five but ran into trouble in the top of the sixth by allowing a one out double followed by a 3 straight singles which put VCU up 2-1 and left the bases loaded as Coach McPhee opted to go to his bullpen. Reliever Sam Berg would hit the first batter he faced resulting in a run then allowed back-to-back RBI singles making the score 5-1. With the bases still loaded and one out, Berg was lifted for Nick Berger who was greeted with the same results. He would walk in a run, then allowed an RBI single making the score 7-1 before VCU shortstop Vimael Machin grounded into an inning ending 4-6-3 double play.
The Huskies would score one run in the bottom of the sixth as Vosler doubled home Leroux for his team leading 21 RBI. VCU would add one more run on a solo shot in the top of the seventh and the 6 run lead proved to be enough for the Rams in game two.
GAME 3: L 10-3
VCU would score early and often as they scored a pair of runs in five of the first six innings. Ram’s starting pitcher Heath Dwyer after allowing 2 runs on 5 hits over the first two frames, would retire 15 batters in a row en route to the game three victory.
The Huskies jumped out 1-0 in the bottom of the first after a Leroux RBI single for their first lead of the weekend as ace Ferguson was vying to improve to 5-0 on the season. The Huskies would not enjoy the lead for long as VCU right fielder Taylor Buran led off the second with a solo blast before the Rams tacked on another to take a 2-1 lead. An Aaron Barbosa RBI single plated Connor Lyons who previously singled to tie the game 2-2 after two innings of play.
After the second it was all VCU as they pounced on Ferguson who would last only 5 innings allowing 8 runs on 10 hits. Dwyer would remain dominant all afternoon; the only blip on the radar was a Rob Fonseca solo homer to lead off the seventh inning, as the Huskies ended the game by being retired in order following the blast. Dwyer and relief pitcher Blake Hauser who came in for the ninth, would combine to face only one batter over the minimum after the second inning.