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Trinity Baseball Blanks Colby To Open NESCAC East Division Series

Andrew DeRoche '20 improved to 4-1 with eight strikeouts in 7.1 innings
Andrew DeRoche '20 improved to 4-1 with eight strikeouts in 7.1 innings

Hartford, Conn. – Junior RHP Andrew DeRoche (North Reading, Mass.) allowed just three hits and struck out eight over 7.1 innings and classmate Matt Koperniak (Adams, Mass.) was 3-for-3 with two walks, two runs, an RBI, and three stolen base to lead the Trinity College Bantams to an 8-0 win over the visiting Colby College Mules in New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) East Division baseball action this afternoon at Murren Family Field in DiBenedetto Stadium.  Trinity improves to 17-4 overall and 5-2 in the NESCAC East, while the Mules fall to 6-10 overall and 0-4 in the division with their 10th setback in a row.  The teams will resume the three-game set in Hartford tomorrow with a doubleheader at noon.

DeRoche and Colby sophomore starter Frank Driscoll (Philadelphia, Pa.) put up zeros through five innings, and the teams combined for just a single apiece offensively until the bottom of the sixth frame.  Koperniak led off the Bantam sixth with a single, stole second, and scored Colby threw the ball into the outfield after a bunt single by sophomore DH Vincent Capone (Ambler, Pa.).  Trinity first-year 3B Mike Guanci (Wakefield, Mass.) drove in senior tri-captain Johnny Stamatis (Ridgefield, Conn.) on a ground ball later in the inning to give the home team a 2-0 lead.

The Bantams opened the game up in the seventh inning with five runs off two Mule relievers, including three runs on a bases-loaded triple by Stamatis.  Colby threatened with one out in the eighth with a double by Keenan Iuliano (Weston, Mass.) followed by a single by senior captain Jackson Ward (Wilton, Conn.), but Trinity senior tri-captain LHP Erik Mohl (Milton, Mass.) came on in relief and retired the last two outs of the inning on strikeouts.  Koperniak singled home another Trinity run in the bottom of the eighth inning, and rookie righty Shayne Rice (West Hartford, Conn.) tossed a scoreless ninth to complete the shutout.

DeRoche improved to 4-1, while Driscoll fell to 0-1 despite yielding just two hits and fanning six.  Three Colby pitchers combined for eight walks, including five by Driscoll, and the Bantams stole five bases.  Senior CF Geoff Stillman (Scituate, Mass.) joined Koperniak with multiple hits for Trinity, finishing 2-for-4 with a double, a stolen base, and two runs.  Iuliano was 2-for-4 for the Mules.