BENNINGTON, VT- It was a cold windy day in Middlebury, VT that even saw snow showers at moments throughout the game. The Mountaineers defensive play was not much better than the weather; as SVC made seven miscues in the field leading to 14 unearned runs in a 19-4 defeat, to in state opponent Middlebury College. The game was originally scheduled as a home game for the Mountaineers but was switched late Wednesday morning due to unplayable field conditions.
"This wasn't the outcome we expected after being in the gym the last five days," stated Coach Schaffer "I expected us to be excited we were on a field playing, but we have to flush this one and come back ready to play tomorrow against Union."
The Panthers of Middlebury jumped out to an early 11-1 lead after the first inning that they never relinquished. Will Baine, Thomas Rafferty, Joseph Conway, and Michael Morris all had two hits for Middlebury. Rafferty reached base six times in the game as Donald McKillop scored four runs and reached the base paths six times as well.
For the Mountaineers the bright spot of the day came from the bats. Sophomore Corey Armstrong went 3-4 raising his team leading average to .425. Leadoff man Dave Gage went 2-3 with a double and an RBI, as Dave Northup added a two RBI double in the fourth inning for SVC. Dan Vardaro, Andrew Morin, and Dillon Desiderato also scored hits in the defeat.
Middlebury's Dylan Kane earned the win in his collegiate debut. Kane allowed four runs, three earned, and struck out four in five innings of work. Patrick Dyer pitched three innings in relief and allowed one hit before John Popkowski threw a scoreless ninth.
Tim Johnson recorded his third loss on the year for SVC. Johnson retired just one batter and allowed eleven runs, two earned. Junior Greg Gilmore threw in relief for the Mountaineers, pitching three and two thirds innings surrendering one earned on four hits and striking out three. Freshman southpaw Kurt Kowalczyk continued his success on the mound striking out five Panthers in three innings of work. Adam Northup returned from surgery to throw his first inning of the 2011 season retiring the first two batters he faced. The next four Middlebury hitters reached base safely scoring a run before Northup sat down the final hitter.
The Mountaineers will look to rebound Thursday afternoon when they play host to Union College at 3:00PM on Bill Epstein Field. SVC drops to 6-11 with the defeat as the Panthers improve to 6-4. Middlebury will travel to Amherst for a three game conference set starting Friday at 3:30.