Albanese homers twice, Bryant tops Northeastern

Photo provided by Bryant University

BOSTON – Junior Matt Albanese hit two home runs and drove in five and freshman Craig Lacey earned his first-career victory as the Bryant University baseball team eased past Northeastern University, 19-2, on Tuesday afternoon at Friedman Diamond.

The Bulldogs (25-7) collected 16 hits on the afternoon, stole a season-high seven bases and put the game away with a nine-run sixth inning. Bryant has now won six-straight against the Huskies (19-15), outscoring them 79-16 in the process.

Bryant had six players finish with multiple hits and seven players scored multiple runs on the afternoon. Albanese finished 2-for-3 with two home runs, five RBI, two runs scored and two walks. It is his second multi-homer game in the last nine days and he now has a NEC-leading eight on the year. Albanese has now driven in 20 runs in the last eight games.

Junior Cole Fabio (Mahwah, N.J.) finished 2-for-3 with three RBI, two runs scored and two stolen bases, freshman Nick Angelini (Bedford, N.H.) was 2-for-5 with two runs scored and three stolen bases, sophomore Malik Daley (Northborough, Mass.) went 2-for-4 with two RBI, three runs and two walks and senior Dan Cellucci (Sudbury, Mass.) went 2-for-4 with two runs scored. It is the first multi-hit game of Daley’s career. Senior Robby Rinn (Warwick, R.I.) went 2-for-5, extended his on-base streak to 28 games and also scored four times on the day.

The Bulldogs jumped on the Huskies early Tuesday, scoring in each of the first four innings. In the first, Fabio led off with a single, stole second and eventually came around to score on a wild pitch. Cellucci then got things going again in the second with a one-out single to right. Daley followed with a ground-rule double to left center and Fabio made it 2-0 with a sac fly to center. Angelini then hit a ground-rule double to right center to score Daley and make it 3-0.

Bryant continued to add to its lead in the third as Albanese greeted Northeastern reliever Tyler Brown with his first home run of the game, a monstrous solo home run down the left field line. Senior Buck McCarthy (Saugus, Mass.) followed with a double to right center and eventually came around to score on a two-out single from Daley.

In the fourth, Angelini was hit by a pitch and Rinn walked to open the inning. The two then performed a double steal and Albanese followed with a sharp ground out to short to score Angelini. Junior Brandon Bingel (Peabody, Mass.) delivered a sac fly to left field two batters later to score Rinn and make it 7-1.

The Black and Gold put the game away with nine runs on just two hits in the sixth. All nine runs came with two outs in the inning. Three-straight two-out walks brought home the first two runs of the inning before Fabio delivered a sharp two-run single back through the middle. Another walk reloaded the bases and Rinn’s hard ground ball went right through the shortstops legs to score two more runs. Albanese then put the finishing touches on the inning with a long three-run home run over the scoreboard in left center.

Bryant capped its scoring with a single run in the eighth and two in the ninth. Rinn singled and then came around to score as redshirt-freshman Nolan Hayward (Glendale, R.I.) poked his first-career hit into right field in the eighth. A bases-loaded walk and an RBI single from sophomore Mickey Gasper (Merrimack, N.H.) capped the scoring in the ninth.

All of the offense was in support of Lacey who earned his first-career win with five innings of one-run ball. He allowed just three hits, walked four and struck out four on the afternoon. Lacey worked around two walks in the first inning, striking out Jake Farrell looking to end the inning. A leadoff walk to Cam Walsh led to Northeastern’s only run in the second before Lacey settled down to retire the next eight batters in a row. He ended his outing by inducing an inning-ending 5-3 double play in the fifth.

Sophomore Ross Weiner (Woodbridge, Conn.), redshirt-junior Garrison Banas (Hadley, Mass.), sophomore Ryan Johnson (East Falmouth, Mass.) and redshirt-junior Oliver Powers (Newtown, Conn.) combined to throw the final four innings. Weiner worked a perfect sixth, Banas induced a 6-4-3 double play in the seventh, Johnson allowed a run in his first appearance in the Feb. 20 in the eighth and Powers tossed a scoreless ninth.

Andrew Misiaszek made his first-career start for Northeastern and suffered his first loss of the season as he allowed three runs (two earned) on five hits in two innings of work. Charlie McConnell had a hit, two walks and scored a run for the Huskies.

The Bulldogs return home this weekend for a big three-game non-conference series with regional rival Stony Brook. The series begins with a 3:00 p.m. first pitch on Friday afternoon.

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