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Clark Baseball played Elms College at home this past Sunday, Feb. 28, their last game before heading off to Florida over spring break. The Cougars came out on top with an 8-3 win against the Blazers.
The game was scoreless until Elms College made their first pitching change in the bottom of the third. The Cougars capitalized on this change, scoring two runs that inning. Elms made another three pitching changes throughout the game, none of which fazed the Clark offense. The entire lineup chimed in with hits, featuring RBIs from Kyle Bonicki (‘18), James Conway (‘16), Zach Richall (‘16), and Mike Tice (‘19). Clark outhit Elms 15-13.
Connor Walsh (‘18) started the game for Clark. He was relieved in the 6th inning by Mike Tice (‘19). Tice allowed two hits. A run almost scored, but a tag play at the plate by Mike Eglow (‘16) kept Elms scoreless. There were two more pitching changes in the eighth: Joe Gouveia (‘17) and then Zack Kaye (‘19). Clark held Elms to no runs until allowing three runs in the eighth. The Cougars finished the game strong both offensively and defensively, scoring two more runs in the bottom of eighth, and holding Elms scoreless in the top of the ninth.
“I thought hitting-wise we came out really strong,” remarked catcher Mike Eglow (‘16). “Pitching wise, Walsh did a great job and really tacted the strikes on when we needed it.”
Eglow said he is hopeful and he looks forward to the rest of the season, Eglow. “To keep this momentum going we have to keep doing what we’ve been doing,” he said, “I think a lot of hard practice going into the week and we come ready to play every day. Looking forward to Florida, we have a lot of young guys on the team that will get the chance to play, and I think it will be good bonding.”
The Cougars will play their next home game on Tuesday, March 15 at 3:30 p.m. against Anna Maria College.
Clark Lacrosse notched a 13-11 win at home against UMass Dartmouth on Saturday, Feb. 27 to kick off their season.
Despite controlling possession for much of the period, the Cougars found themselves down 4-1 after the first quarter, with midfielder Isaac Bass (‘17) scoring the lone goal. However, the team came into the second quarter with confidence. “It just seemed like the ball was bouncing towards the other team,” said attack Nick Johnson (‘17). Attack John Goracy (‘17) agreed, “The sport of lacrosse swings pretty quickly, so a three-goal lead in the first quarter is nothing, really,” he said. “We just had to keep our heads up.”
As the final score would suggest, Clark bounced back in the remaining three quarters, outscoring UMass Dartmouth 12-7. A great deal of the playmaking stemmed from Johnson, who recorded four assists and two goals. One of his assists happened on a beautiful sequence in which he stifled the defense with a shot fake, and dumped it to Bass who whipped a shot into the top left corner of the net. “That’s my favorite play,” Johnson said.
Bass scored four goals this game, and seemed comfortable in his new role after scoring three goals all last season in a more defensive role. “The offense was flowing pretty well, and I got open a bunch of times because of my teammates,” said Bass. Johnson echoed his teammate’s statement, “Our offense is a lot more patient, and I think we’re taking better shots. I think we had 52 shots, and not very many bad ones,” he said.
The hardest challenges for the team will come once the NEWMAC schedule starts. When asked if the team’s patient attack is sustainable against tougher opponents, Johnson said, “That’s the tricky part. Hopefully it will be.” Bass added that he thinks that “with more experience, our offense will be able to flow.” Johnson and Bass both said they think the team will be competitive with teams in the NEWMAC.
Clark will play its next home game on Wednesday, March 16 against Salve Regina College at 7 p.m. The Cougars lost 7-6 to Salve Regina in triple overtime last year, and are eager to host the Seahawks for a rematch.