Huskies Drop Series Capper to Blue Hens, 9–7

Story by Catherine Morrison

Photos by Sadie Parker

NEWARK, DE — On a sweltering Sunday afternoon, the Northeastern Huskies (30–8, 18–2 CAA) looked to put themselves back together after a devastating Saturday loss to the Delaware Blue Hens (12–22, 8–16 CAA) that ended their NCAA-best 20-game winning streak.

Wyatt Scotti was tapped to start for the Huskies, while Wyatt Nelson got the start for the Blue Hens. In what would become a battle of the Wyatts, Scotti ended up searching for his command in a rare shaky outing. 

Scotti started off the first inning by hitting three batters in a row to load the bases. The third batter, Joseph Carpenter, ended up leaving the game in the next inning.

Up next was the massive Jack Goan, who slammed a deep sac fly to right field to put the Blue Hens on the scoreboard. Scotti’s troubles were far from over, as he gave up a hit to the first batter he faced in the second inning, Eric Ludman. Ludman was sent home, along with Kyle Baker, by a double from Vinny Vaccone.

“We hit too many guys in the first inning there,” Northeastern head coach Mike Glavine said. “The first inning was tough because we had some guys on our side that didn’t score. We escaped with only one run so I thought that was huge. Then [Scotti] kind of settled in and gave us five innings. But he just has to attack the zone better.”

Northeastern looked to get ahead of the Blue Hens in the top of the third and led off with a hit by catcher JP Olson. Spenser Smith, who had four extra-base hits in the doubleheader on Saturday, advanced Olson with a hit. Olson got his opportunity to run home two batters later on a single by Scott Holzwasser. 

The Huskies seemed to be back in prime form and hunting for the lead in the fourth after a scoreless third by Scotti. Their patient approach paid off, as the first two batters Nelson faced, Ryan Cervone and Corey DiLoreto, walked. Olson singled for the second straight at-bat, sending Cervone home and DiLoreto to second. Both advanced on a wild pitch as Nelson struggled to regain control of the inning. A sacrifice flyout and an RBI double was all it took to tie the game at three runs apiece, and Nelson was replaced by Derek Wakeley.

Wakeley looked to get out of the jam but struggled, walking his first batter with four straight pitches and sending Costello home on a wild pitch that went behind the catcher to the backstop. Wakeley then gave up a double to Max Viera, scoring Holzwasser.

It looked like the Huskies had regained their mojo, setting the basepaths aflame and getting a 6–4 lead. However, it wasn’t meant to be, as the Huskies only gained one more in the sixth inning while their struggling bullpen gave up the lead. David Stiehl gave up two runs in the sixth, tying the game. Northeastern looked to retake the lead in the top of the seventh but were stymied by sophomore Joey Silan, who entered Sunday having pitched just one inning all season.

The Blue Hens had no such problem with Northeastern replacement Brandon Dufault. The leadoff batter Vaccone took first on a hit by pitch, then advanced to third when Dufault’s pickoff throw sailed over the first baseman’s head. Delaware made Dufault pay with a humongous two-run home run by Goan to make it 9–7.

“I thought he was throwing hard, he looked good,” Glavine said of Dufault. “I thought he was throwing hard, looked fresh, he hadn’t thrown since Wednesday. It was good to get him out there in that situation and I would do it again. I thought it was absolutely the right spot to bring him in, it just didn’t work out today.”

Northeastern was unable to come back in the ninth. After winning 20 games in a row, they’ve lost consecutive games for the first time since mid-February.

“We just had to come out and try to win a series, really,” Glavine noted. “It was good in a sense to have the pressure of the streak off, but today all we were trying to do was trying to win a series . . . We challenged them, and they got us today.”

One bright spot for Northeastern Huskies was Holzwasser, who reached base every time he made a plate appearance — three singles and two walks. When he crossed home plate in the fourth inning, Holzwasser officially beat the Northeastern record for career runs, previously held by Hernan Guerrero.

(Fun fact time: Delaware beat Northeastern in the 1998 conference tournament to advance to the NCAA playoffs, and Guerrero was named to the All-Tournament Team with teammate Carlos Peña. Ever heard of him?)

But back to Holzwasser.

“Scott was awesome this weekend, I think he was our best player, no question about that,” Glavine said. “Great power, great speed, great defense, brings the ability to get on base, steal bases, brings toughness, brings speed, brings athleticism . . . we saw them all this weekend. He does it all and the guys love him, he brings a lot of energy, and he did that this weekend . . . He’s had a tremendous career and we’re going to definitely need him moving forward.”

18 and Counting: Huskies Topple Pride, 10–3

By Milton Posner

What seemed in the early stages like another Northeastern blowout, then like a war of bullpen attrition as Hofstra made a late-inning rally, wound up being another Northeastern blowout after all.

A 10–3 win boosted the Huskies to a 16–0 conference record (28–6 overall) and extended their win streak to 18 games, the longest in the nation. That conference start, the best in CAA history, has afforded the Huskies an eight-game division lead; although pandemic schedules are subject to last-minute change, Northeastern has likely clinched first place already.

The nature of the game begot unorthodox substitution patterns. The Huskies and Pride were just three games removed from the capper of their four-game weekend series, and both have four-game series beginning in two days. (Milton Posner and Catherine Morrison will call Northeastern’s Friday, Saturday, and Sunday games live for WRBB.)

The Huskies answered the time squeeze with a planned bullpen day. Brian Rodriguez started for the first time all season after 11 appearances out of the pen, ceding a hit and a walk in three scoreless innings. 

“Brian has started for us in years past. He had enough rest from the weekend, so it was an easy decision,” Northeastern head coach Mike Glavine explained. “We really wanted to win that first inning and keep the momentum on our side. I thought he did awesome — pounded the strike zone, pitched really well. I didn’t know how many innings he was going to give us; I just told him to go out and see how it went.”

Thomas Balboni, James Quinlivan, Owen Langan, Jake Gigliotti, David Stiehl, Eric Yost, and Brandon Dufault combined to forfeit just three runs the rest of the way. It was the second-most pitchers Glavine has used in a game this season, equaling the 11–2 win over UMass on March 3 (eight pitchers) and trailing only the 11–1 win over UMass on 4/7 (nine). Glavine confirmed that everyone is expected to be available for Friday’s game, save for Rodriguez.

Hofstra used a healthy six pitchers themselves, but it appeared to be a lot less deliberate. Starter Jack Jett — who had tossed six or more innings in six of his eight starts this season — exited the game without recording an out. Five days after the Huskies tagged him for seven runs on ten hits, they tagged him again. But this time, they didn’t need as many hits.

Jeff Costello and Scott Holzwasser walked to open the game. When they attempted a double steal on ball four to Jared Dupere, third baseman Ryan Morash couldn’t handle catcher Nick Marrero’s throw, allowing Costello to score. A Max Viera double cashed in Holzwasser and chased Jett from the game.

“That’s their Friday starter; he just pitched against us the other day,” Glavine noted. “They were probably thinking the same thing we were — wanting to win the first inning and get the momentum. So they gave it to one of their best starters.”

Michael O’Hanlon was first out of the pen for the Pride, and though he retired the side in order, back-to-back sacrifice flies from Danny Crossen and Ben Malgeri completed an odd Husky inning: four runs on just one hit, with no runners stranded.

“It might have been our best offensive inning of the whole year,” Glavine said. “Our guys really grinded out at-bats. We got to two strikes a couple of times but they couldn’t put us away. We really made [Jett] work.”

From then on, the Pride were left to play the same sort of bullpen game the Huskies did. And though O’Hanlon, Chris Mott, and Tristan Nemjo allowed just three combined hits in six innings of work, they still forfeited three runs to the Huskies. It was only in the ninth inning that the Huskies scored by stringing hits together. All told, the Huskies produced 10 runs on the afternoon using ten hits (including four doubles, two from Max Viera), six walks, six stolen bases in six tries, and three hit-by-pitches.

“We didn’t get the long ball today,” Glavine noted. “It was a bit of a hard day to hit; the wind was blowing in, so that’s what we need to be able to do — grind out those at-bats, make them work, drive up pitch counts, work our walks, get hit by pitches, steal bases, put pressure on them, and then get some big hits. We also had some big sacrifice flies. We talk about having a dynamic, relentless offense that scores runs in a lot of different ways. Today we didn’t do it with the home run; we did it with everything else, which was really great to see.”

After six empty innings to start the game, Hofstra finally broke through against Husky hurler Jake Gigliotti, manufacturing a run with a single, a walk, and a single. David Stiehl finished the inning in Gigliotti’s stead, but ceded two runs of his own in the eighth on a two-run double by Kevin Bruggeman. Eric Yost came on and nearly got burned on his first pitch to Brian Goulard, but the fly ball settled into Ben Malgeri’s glove on the center field warning track to neutralize the threat.

A home run would have pulled the Pride within two runs. But the Huskies posted their three spot in the top of the following frame, and the 10–3 final score barely reflected the fingerprints of the snuffed-out Hofstra rally. The Huskies retained their streak, and the attention that has accompanied it.

“We’re streaking. We’re just kind of embracing it, owning it. Every day there’s more confidence than there was the day before,” Glavine said. “No one’s arrogant, no one’s taking anything for granted, no one’s nervous or worried about the streak. We talk about it openly. We know we have the longest streak in the country. We love it.”

“We know everybody wants to beat us,” he continued. “We know every time we play a game now, someone can knock us off. The guys keep rising to the occasion. If anything, it’s heightened their focus, their energy, their passion, and their enjoyment of the game. It really works for us in so many positive ways and it’s been great to see.”

Huskies Sweep Tigers for 13th Straight Win

Story by Milton Posner

Photos by Sarah Olender

BROOKLINE, MA — The first three games of the Northeastern–Towson series were largely defined by quality starting pitching, difference-making defense, and the sort of persistent small ball teams play when the wind plucks fly balls out of the air.

But on Sunday afternoon . . . all of that kept happening.

The result was the same, too. The Huskies (23–6, 11–0 CAA) completed their sweep of the Tigers (15–29, 5–7 CAA) with a 3–1 victory. It was their 13th consecutive win and matched the 1991 team for the best start to a season in program history.

The small ball was especially pronounced from the start. The teams’ combined total of seven hits in the first six innings doesn’t seem especially unusual until you examine a few things. First, there were no hits for either team through three innings, only four walks and a hit-by-pitch.

But even when the hits started coming, things weren’t normal. The first base knock of the game, a Billy Godrick line drive smoked over the head of Northeastern left fielder Jeff Costello, was rendered moot when Costello barehanded the ball off the wall and coolly fired a laser into second.

Both of Husky third baseman Danny Crossen’s hits were fairly regular line drive knocks, but the other four hits in the first six innings weren’t. Javon Fields’s hit should have been an error on Northeastern shortstop Spenser Smith, Smith’s own hit was a bunt, Jared Dupere’s was a line drive off the pitcher, and Max Viera’s was a ground ball fielded by the shortstop.

None left the infield. It was the smallest of small ball. Puny ball.

This was attributable partly to the persistent wind, but also to the brilliance of the two starting pitchers. Towson’s Danny Madden ceded four walks and three hits in five innings, but timely outs stranded five Northeastern runners and limited the damage to one run.

“We’re just struggling to have a big inning right now,” Northeastern head coach Mike Glavine said of the team’s approach. “I was probably trying to put some bunts on because I didn’t like what I was seeing and just wanted to put pressure on them. We just couldn’t get the big hits, and I think that’s the last really big piece of our offense right now.”

Northeastern hurler Wyatt Scotti fared even better, striking seven batters and allowing only five baserunners over seven scintillating innings. His start was part of an excellent run of starting pitching for the Huskies, who got 28 ⅔ innings of five-run ball from their starters over the course of the Towson series.

The Tigers did manage a run after Scotti hit one batter and walked another, but the final nail in the coffin wasn’t of his doing. With runners on first and third with two out, Scotti picked Noah Cabrera off of first. When Billy Godrick took off from third, the Husky infielders couldn’t snap off a throw home in time to beat him.

“They certainly intentionally did something; we just didn’t run the defense properly,” Glavine lamented. “Give them credit. They forced us to make plays all game. If we don’t make plays, they capitalize. We didn’t make the right decision there.”

“And then I probably messed up the other one,” Glavine continued, referring to Northeastern’s failed attempt at the same play in the fifth inning. “I was trying to get a run there myself. I wanted Spenser to be aggressive there once they threw the ball; we just went a little bit early and they got us.”

That said, the Huskies did plate a game-tying run immediately before the failed steal, as Scott Holzwasser’s sac fly scored JP Olson. Holzwasser also notched a diving catch that was somehow more spectacular than the one he recorded on Saturday afternoon. Here’s Saturday’s:

And here’s Sunday’s:

Things really came to a head in the eighth inning. With the score still deadlocked 1–1, Towson’s Jake McLaughlin singled, then Burke Camper followed with a bunt to the first-base side of the mound. Holzwasser, first baseman Ian Fair, and pitcher Jake Gigliotti converged on the rolling ball, which Fair fielded. With Holzwasser and Gigliotti failing to get to the bag in time, Fair missed a desperation tag before flipping the ball to empty space. The ball trickled away as McLaughlin advanced to third.

“I didn’t think we were sharp today,” Glavine admitted. “It was a struggle executing some stuff fundamentally, we made a lot of mistakes.”

But Fair redeemed himself on the next play with a gorgeous glove flip to home on a Towson squeeze attempt. Then, after a hit-by-pitch loaded the bases, the Huskies escaped the inning unscathed when Godrick hit into a 6-4-3 double play. Replays showed that Godrick was just barely safe, but the Huskies took the win as Godrick slammed his helmet on the ground in frustration and strolled aimlessly toward the outfield.

In the bottom of the frame, the Huskies finally shattered the small-ball streak. Center fielder Ben Malgeri doubled, then Fair, who has largely underperformed expectations after being named CAA Preseason Player of the Year, tripled home the go-ahead run.

“I thought he was on the ball today. I thought his swings were close all game, had a chance to leave the yard or drive a gap,” Glavine said. “He’s still swinging and missing more than he ever normally does; his feet are going a little bit too much and his head’s moving. But I also felt like he was aggressive.”

Olson flew out to center to score Fair from third, providing an insurance run for Husky reliever David Stiehl, who recorded the save. Glavine said his use of five different relievers across just 7 ⅓ relief innings in the series — Eric Yost and Brandon Dufault appeared twice — reflects something more than depth.

“I don’t really like to give the guys set roles,” he explained. “They probably want them; I don’t like to give them to ‘em. I want them ready. When I call your number, you be ready. And I think they learn to embrace that. Today I called Gigliotti’s number. I didn’t think he was very sharp. We kinda made some plays for him, and he made pitches when he had to.”

“Yost is a little bit of everything, so he doesn’t really know his role either,” Glavine added. “I think it’s going to make us a better team in the long run . . . That way, when you get into the [CAA] Tournament, you’ll be prepared.”

Huskies Conquer Warriors, 12–5

Story by Milton Posner

Photos by Sarah Olender

BROOKLINE, MA — For the first three and a half innings of Wednesday afternoon’s game, the Merrimack Warriors, a squad playing its first full season in Division I, could dare to dream of upsetting the Northeastern Huskies, a squad with a .700 winning percentage. The Warriors jumped out to a 5–0 lead as the Huskies, who were coming off a 10-day COVID hiatus, struggled to keep up.

And then the hammer dropped.

Northeastern (15–6, 3–0 CAA) tacked on nine runs in the fourth and fifth innings and never looked back, eventually dismissing Merrimack (12–15, 8–7 NEC) by a score of 12–5.

“We were pretty bad early in the game, just sluggish and rusty, everything you get with a ten-day layoff,” Northeastern head coach Mike Glavine noted, adding that timing issues plagued the team until their second time through the order. “Overall it was a great win considering we weren’t on the field, hadn’t practiced as a team, just kinda showed up and played. So I was pretty impressed overall with how they did today.”

The defining stretch commenced with one gone in the bottom of the fourth, when hits from Ian Fair, Danny Crossen, JP Olson, and Spenser Smith — plus an error and a wild pitch — yielded four runs and chased Merrimack starter Stephen Fleury from the game.

It continued in the fifth as Merrimack hurlers increasingly lost their command. Jack Collins, brought on to relieve Fleury, ceded another four runs, all earned, to the surging Huskies. Scott Holzwasser was hit by a pitch and Jared Dupere singled him to second, then the pair executed the first of the Huskies’ two double steals on the afternoon. Crossen doubled them both home before Fair sent a line drive screaming the opposite way and over the fence.

For Fair, who entered the game hitting just .163 after being named CAA Preseason Player of the Year, the homer was an exceptionally welcome component of a three-for-four day at the dish.

“If Ian is going well, the ball is going to right-center field all day every day,” Glavine noted. “He is a game-changer for us. I don’t want to say he’s the key, but if he gets hitting our offense goes to another level . . . He’s had a couple monster games this year, and a couple of those times we’ve scored double-digit runs; it’s not by accident.”

Collins gave way to LT Pare, who fared little better on the mound. After Kyle Peterson singled, Pare hit Crossen, hit Olson, then walked Smith to force home a run. A fielder’s choice and a double play limited the damage, but the Huskies’ 9–5 lead effectively decided the game.

Base stealing was a critical component of the Huskies’ offensive engine all afternoon, as they swiped eight bases — including two apiece for Dupere and Fair — and were caught just once.

“We spend a ton of time on it in practice; we’ll have a lot of teams beat,” Glavine said. “So we have to utilize it. We talk about stealing bases, but we also talk about the game within a game, which is getting the pitcher to pick over to first a lot, distracting him so our hitter can get a good pitch. I like to think our baserunning is part of the reason why we get some walks and hit-by-pitches, some wild pitches and passed balls — because we put so much pressure on them and they know we can run.”

The last four frames featured three Husky runs and one highlight-reel moonshot. Dupere’s fifth home run in the last six games struck the roof of the auxiliary press box in right-center field and caromed out of the Friedman Diamond altogether. But Dupere’s cold-blooded reaction made a titanic shot even better; the Husky right fielder started undoing his batting gloves as he left the batter’s box and eased into his home-run trot.

On the pitching side, Glavine followed through on his pregame promise to deploy a number of hurlers, largely because of the ten-day layoff. He pulled starter Wyatt Scotti after just two innings, saying Scotti would likely be used this weekend.

“He made a mistake; he was late covering home plate on that wild pitch or he probably would have gotten the guy out,” Glavine said of the play that yielded Merrimack’s first run. “But overall I thought he pitched really well.”

David Stiehl, who relieved Scotti, ceded four runs (three earned) in 1⅓ innings as he struggled to find his command. When he walked a batter after a 3–0 mound visit, Glavine subbed him out.

The hurlers who followed him fared far better. James Quinlivan, Brian Rodriguez, Thomas Balboni, and Eric Yost combined for 5⅔ scoreless innings, allowing just two hits and two walks across that span. Yost was particularly effective, setting down the side in the ninth on just six pitches.

“It’s constantly resetting; I don’t know how the guys are doing it, to be honest,” Glavine said of his pitching staff in light of the COVID layoff. “For them to come out and do what they did today, I was really impressed.”

The Huskies will continue their 15-game homestand with a four-game series against the Delaware Blue Hens. WRBB will call all four contests, beginning with a 2 PM Eastern tilt on Friday; Milton Posner, Khalin Kapoor, and Jack Sinclair will be on the mic for that one.

Northeastern Splits Doubleheader Against UMass Lowell

By Catherine Morrison

The Northeastern Huskies (5–5) split a doubleheader with the UMass Lowell River Hawks (1–7) Friday afternoon at Parsons Field.

In the first game, Northeastern starter Kyle Murphy settled in, striking out eight and only allowing four hits and three earned runs. Murphy, who battled command issues in his previous start, breezed through six innings. Northeastern backed up Murphy offensively, scoring four runs in the fifth on top of three runs from the first four innings.

“The good thing is he’s been able to settle in some games and come back,” Northeastern head coach Mike Glavine said. “I think he was 90 to 94 today and stuff looked excellent. We’ve just got to find a way to be cleaner when he pitches. We’ve gotta limit the free bases . . . It seems to speed up on us a little bit, but he’s a calming presence out there which is big for us.”

UMass Lowell pitcher Collin Duffley, on the other hand, struggled with his command, allowing five runs (four earned) in four innings. He only struck out three and hit two.

His replacement, Sal Fusco, didn’t fare much better. Fusco came in with two batters on base, and promptly hit Corey DiLoreto in the head. DiLoreto looked shaken as he walked to first base and was looked at by an athletic trainer, then was replaced by Ryan Cervone. It was a huge loss, as DiLoreto is one of Northeastern’s main offensive producers.

Northeastern’s next batter, Scott Holzwasser, got revenge with a two-run double. Fusco was clearly rattled and gave up another run, threw a wild pitch, and hit another Northeastern player to make the score 7–3 Northeastern after five.

Northeastern has not had a problem this season tacking the runs on, but has struggled to pitch and field well enough to keep leads in the later innings. Friday afternoon was no different.

David Stiehl replaced Murphy in the seventh and quickly found himself in a jam with bases loaded and one out. Stiehl was clearly rattled and walked the next batter, making the score 7–4 Northeastern. He stuck out the next batter with six pitches, and looked as if he might be regaining his composure. The feeling didn’t last long, however, as the next batter homered to left field for a grand slam, sending the UMass Lowell dugout into wild cheers and giving the River Hawks an 8–7 lead. Owen Langdon replaced Stiehl to get the last out and give Northeastern a chance to regain the lead after a disastrous seventh inning.

Northeastern couldn’t recover however, and failed to get anything going in the last two innings. UMass Lowell added another two runs in the ninth, handing Northeastern a disappointing 10–7 defeat.

“The first game was just a really, really, tough loss,” Glavine said. “We just couldn’t put them away. We had an opportunity to extend the lead multiple times offensively and then we just didn’t do enough defensively and on the mound . . . We just gotta learn how to win these tight games.”

Northeastern has struggled to find its identity this season after COVID-19 shortened their last campaign, and this doubleheader was a prime example of that. Whereas the first game was a long, drawn-out slugfest, the second game was a short and sweet pitchers’ duel.

Freshman Sebastian Keane started for the Huskies. After some rocky starts this year, Keane was lights out Friday, pitching a shutout while allowing only two hits and zero walks. Keane worked quickly and efficiently, striking out nine and throwing only 102 pitches.

“I thought his fastball was awesome,” Glavine said. “He was throwing 93 in the ninth so I thought that was a big thing for him, the slider was a strikeout pitch as well. I thought he really commanded the strike zone with both pitches. I thought JP Olsen was outstanding behind the plate receiving Seb and did a great job. He really was just dominant today and hopefully he’s got many more of those ahead.”

Despite Keane’s incredible performance, Northeastern didn’t do much to back him up offensively. The only two runs came in the third inning. Freshman River Hawk hurler Zach Fortuna was already on shaky ground with his command, and started the inning by striking out Max Viera. He then walked Jared Dupere, who advanced to second on a wild pitch. In keeping with Northeastern’s aggressive base stealing policy, Dupere then stole third. The aggressive baserunning was for nought, as Fortuna walked Holzwasser and then advanced him to second when he hit the next batter.

Clearly spent, Fortuna was replaced by Miles Cota, who walked his first batter to give Northeastern their first run. Cota was saved by his fielders when the next batter, Danny Crossen flied out to left field. The third baseman threw to second for the third out after Dupere ran home to make the score 2–0 Northeastern. 

“When we talk about the offense, it’s whatever it takes,” Glavine said. “Some days it’s going to take ten, some days it’s going to take two, and a lot of the times the two is much harder than the ten. That means somebody’s pitching really well or we’re shorthanded or things just aren’t going our way . . . In game two we’re just scrapping and clawing and got some free bases and walks and stole some bases and got a bunt down and just fighting to find those runs.”

After a shaky third, Cota settled in and pitched a stellar five innings without giving up another run.

Northeastern battled through two very different games to split the doubleheader against the Seahawks, exemplifying the struggles they’ve had early into the season. 

“We are searching for answers a little bit here and right now we’re just a poorly coached team and not doing enough things well,” Glavine admitted. “We just have to find a way to get better. We gotta start believing we can win.”

Northeastern will look to win the series tomorrow against UMass Lowell at 1 PM.

Northeastern Trampled by Wake Forest

By Jordan Baron and Sarah Olender

It was Northeastern baseball’s second game of the season, and anyone who watched yesterday’s matchup knows that Northeastern struggled in the first inning. That story didn’t change on Saturday, as the Huskies dropped their second game in a row, 9–0, to the No. 17 Wake Forest Demon Deacons in game two of a three-game road set. 

It was a tough start in the first three innings. Northeastern batters struck out, popped out, or grounded out, and the one man to make it to first, freshman Max Viera, got picked off a few pitches later.

“Overall we just gotta play better, be sharper, and offensively we showed signs but we didn’t hit well with runners in scoring position, but we got guys on, we put up some pretty good at bats,” Northeastern head coach Mike Glavine said. “We weren’t quite as sharp and crisp as we were last night.”

Wake Forest easily worked Husky starter Sebastian Keane into a high pitch count. Midway through the third inning, Keane reached his limit, having already thrown 79 pitches and given up six runs. Despite the depressing score, Keane had punched out four Demon Deacons.

“We’ve got to start winning the first inning and putting up zeros,” Glavine said. “So maybe it’s just changing a little bit how we prep pregame and being ready to go in that first inning, trying to get off to a better start because we definitely don’t want to be constantly playing from behind.”

Redshirt senior reliever David Stiehl took over the hill to try and close out the third inning. Stiehl also struggled to shut down the Deacons, allowing two more runs that were both charged to Keane before finally ending the scoring threat. Steihl settled in afterward and finished with an impressive line, allowing no earned runs and just one hit over 2.2 innings of work. The right-hander walked two and struck out three.

On the other side of things, Wake Forest junior starter William Fleming diced the Husky lineup, allowing just one hit through three innings with his fastball hitting the upper nineties.

Suddenly, the Huskies found life in the fourth, racking up three straight hits to load the bases with just one gone. But the right-handed Fleming kept his composure, and showcased the depth and strength of the Demon Deacon pitching staff as he fanned Corey DiLoreto looking and got Jeff Costello to pop to second to end the frame.

Fleming continued his rampage against the Northeastern lineup into the fifth and escaped a jam in the sixth despite the Husky offense putting two runners in scoring position. Jeff Costello gave the ball quite a ride during the rally as he pulled an inside fastball down the left field line, but it hooked foul, and Fleming escaped the inning.

“Tip your cap to their pitchers tonight,” Glavine said. “They did a really good job and had us sort of playing defense when we had runners in scoring position.”

The Northeastern defense didn’t exactly help out their teammates on the mound, as shortstop Spenser Smith booted a ground ball early on, and Ben Malgeri and Costello nearly collided as they let a third-inning ball drop in the gap.

“We had a couple defensive mistakes out there that cost us again,” Glavine said. “Against a team like that or really any team you can’t can’t give them extra routes.”

Despite Keane’s unfortunate start, the Huskies had some good performances from the rest of the pen, as Rick Burroni, James Quinlivan, and Jake Gigliotti all tossed effective innings. The damage was done, however, and Demon Deacons ran away with the 9–0 victory.

“We just weren’t as sharp tonight, weren’t as competitive, fell behind early again, second day in a row makes it tough coming back against the pitching they have,” Glavine said.