(Northborough, Mass.) Trailing by one with two outs and a runner on second, junior Jonathan De La Cruz (Haverhill, Mass.) smacked a hard line drive to right field that looked like it would tie the game however the Newbury right-fielder fielded the tough short hop and threw out the tying run at the plate as the Rivier University Baseball team dropped their non-confernece contest this afternoon 7-6 to Newbury College at the New England Baseball Complex.
It was a big gamble that Head Coach Anthony Perry took waving in freshman catcher Ryan Larkin (Whitman, Mass.) around third as the Nighthawks' Mattthew Sobray (Santa Clarita, Calif.) pinpointed his throw to the plate to end the game.
The Raiders, now 1-11 overall on the season, got off to a quick start with two-out rallies in the first and second innings.
In the opening frame, with runners on the corners, sophomore Brett Iannazzo (Methuen, Mass.) singled to score senior Jacob Rayner (Billerica, Mass.) for a 1-0 lead. Senior Adam Arkell (Dover, N.H.) followed that up with a double, scoring two, for a 3-0 edge.
In the second, freshman Brandan Sullivan (Manchester, N.H.) scored from first on a Rayner, two-out double, into the right field corner, giving the Raiders a 4-0 lead.
Newbury would battle back to tie the game and take the lead, thanks in large part to the long ball. The Nighthawks' David Center (Medford, Mass.) belted his second of the game in the sixth inning to give Newbury a lead they would not relinquish.
Rivier freshman Ryan Schaefer (Everett, Mass.) suffered the loss (0-3) as he pitched six plus innings allowing six runs, five earned, on eight hits while striking out three and not issuing a walk. Classmates Alex DiVito (Somerville, Mass.) and Marcus Ferdinand (Middleboro, Mass.) threw the final two innings in relief.
Iannazzo finished 3-for-4 with three RBI and a trio of singles. Rayner finished 2-for-4 with a pair of doubles and Arkell drove in two runs, batting 1-for-5 with a first inning, two-run double.
The Raiders will hopefully be back in action this Sunday afternoon as they begin Great Northeast Athletic Conference play with a double-header at Lasell College. First pitch is scheduled for 3pm at Brandeis University.