Knights see six-game win streak stopped by Golden Bears
Thursday, March 22, 2012 - 12:50 am

Winter Haven, FL – After starting the season with six wins in seven games, the Clarkson University Baseball team ran into a buzz saw in Western New England, a team that participated in last year’s College World Series. The Golden Knights hitting came to a halt against Brendan Nugent, who allowed six hits in five innings, as Western New England won 18-2 Wednesday afternoon at Chain O Lakes Stadium.

The Golden Knights saw their six-game winning streak come to an end, falling to 6-2 overall, while Western New England, ranked in a pair of Division III polls, improved to 5-4.

The Golden Bears were aggressive against Clarkson starter Jerry Coleman (Potsdam, NY) swinging at the first two pitches of the game, resulting in a single and a pop up. Coleman then struck out Western New England’s number-three hitter, but a single to shortstop and a double to right, both of which were nearly gloved for the final out of the inning, gave Western New England a run, and a passed ball provided another, giving the Bears a 2-0 lead in the top of the first.

Western New England picked up another run in the second inning as Coleman hit a pair of batters before allowing a single to right to score one run, creating a first-and-third situation. He then induced a pop up to catcher Matt Jenack (Massena, NY) to end the threat.

After three straight groundouts quietly retired the Knights, the Golden Bears continued to score. A leadoff double appeared to be all that Western New England would get after a strikeout and a harmless groundball, but a throwing error provided the Golden Bears with second life and a first-and-third situation with one out. Three straight hits created three runs, and a sacrifice fly gave the visitors another unearned run.

After three hitless innings, the Knights’ bats came alive in the fourth as David Kinney (Mexico, NY) opened the inning with a first-pitch double to left field. David Wixted (Ballston Lake, NY) followed with an infield single, and Dan Lenney (Clifton Park, NY) drove in Clarkson’s first run of the game with a fielder’s choice. John Coleman (Potsdam, NY) followed with a single to center, and another single from Justin Rebhun (East Greenbush, NY) scored Lenney from second base.

Following a scoreless fifth, Western New England struck for two quick runs in the top of the sixth. Matt Anthonis singled to third and Mike Rubino hit what looked like a harmless fly ball to left field. However, the ball kept carrying and traveled just a few extra feet over the wall for a two-run homer. Another two-run double gave Western New England an 11-2 lead, and that advantage extended by three more runs in the seventh with the benefit of just one hit, as the Knights’ relievers struggled to find the strike zone.

Offensively for Clarkson, Kinney was the only player to record a multi-hit game, going 2-for-4 with a double. On the mound, Coleman took the loss for the Knights, going three innings and allowing four earned runs while whiffing four batters. Pete Roma (Endicott, NY) came on in relief and allowed four runs, getting two double plays in his three innings of work.