THE BOWDOIN COLLEGE baseball team hosted Trinity in a key NESCAC Eastern Division series Friday and Saturday. In the top photo, Bowdoin base runner Erik Jacobsen is out at third as Trinity third baseman Tyler Forgoine makes the tag on Friday. Above, Bowdoin shortstop Sean Mullaney fires to first for an out.

THE BOWDOIN COLLEGE baseball team hosted Trinity in a key NESCAC Eastern Division series Friday and Saturday. In the top photo, Bowdoin base runner Erik Jacobsen is out at third as Trinity third baseman Tyler Forgoine makes the tag on Friday. Above, Bowdoin shortstop Sean Mullaney fires to first for an out.

BRUNSWICK

The formula on Friday for the Bowdoin College baseball team was quite simple. Give starting pitcher Henry Van Zant an early lead, play good defense and pick up a key New England Small College Athletic Conference win over Trinity at Pickard Field in the Polar Bears’ home opener.

Sometimes, simple arithmetic can work out perfectly, as Bowdoin captured a 3-1 win in the key Eastern Division series opener.

The Polar Bears jumped on Bantams starting pitcher Jed Robinson for two first-inning runs, and Van Zant was superb on the mound, going the distance on seven strikeouts, one walk and four hits. The senior hurler improved to 5-1 on the season.

“As far as I’m concerned, Henry is not only the best pitcher in our conference but the best pitcher in New England,” said Bowdoin coach Mike Connolly. “He is just that good and very tough to play against. Today, we beat them to the punch, and I felt like we kept the pressure on them. With Henry out there, that is a tough combination.”

With two outs in the Bowdoin first, Aaron Rosen stole second, moved to third on a passed ball and scored on an infield single by Chad Martin for a 1-0 lead. On the next pitch, the Polar Bears stayed aggressive on the base paths as Martin stole second and scored on a single by Bjorn Hansen for a quick 2-0 lead.

“We wanted to be very aggressive from the get-go and attack the ball,” said Martin, who said his teammates were happy to be on their home field for the first time this season. “It was a perfect day and beautiful in every single way. This is a big series for us. All of us have so much energy and just can’t wait to play.”

Bowdoin increased its lead to 3-0 in the third thanks to Martin, who crushed a Robinson offering for a run-scoring triple that scored Erik Jacobsen.

Van Zant took over from there. He didn’t allow a baserunner until the fourth when Matthew Toth walked, and the Bantams’ first hit didn’t come until the sixth when Connor Sullivan led off the frame with a sharp single up the middle.

Trinity scored its run in the seventh. Bryan Wolfe doubled with one out and scored on a bloop single to left field by Tyler Forgione.

But, Van Zant retired eight of the final nine batters for a complete-game win, throwing just 96 pitches.

Robinson also went the distance for Trinity. The lefty seemed to get stronger as the short 90-minute contest went along, finishing with five strikeouts, one walk, three hit batters and six hits.

“Both guys worked fast and threw lots of strikes,” said Connolly.

Martin finished 2-for-4 with two RBIs and a run scored to lead the Bowdoin offense. Sean Mullaney singled and was solid on defense from his shortstop position. Chris Nadeau and Jacobsen also picked up a single in the win.

Saturday doubleheader

Trinity bounced back on Saturday, earning a doubleheader sweep, 1-0 and 6-3.

Bowdoin fell to 10-16 overall, 3-5 in NESCAC play, while the Bantams improved to 12-12, 4-5 in the NESCAC.

In the opener, Trinity’s Sean Meekins tossed a complete game with nine strikeouts and three hits allowed for the win. Jacobsen was the hard-luck loser, going the distance on four hits and two strikeouts.

Wolfe singled in the Trinity fourth with two outs. Forgoine singled and Scott Cullinane followed with a hit to push the game’s only run across.

In the series finale, the Bantams tallied four runs in the ninth for the sweep.

Bowdoin scored in the second as Martin, Cole DiRoberto and Tom Wells each singled. Martin scored on a wild pitch.

Down 2-1, Rosen launched a home run to left field to tie the game.

Bowdoin returns to action today at home against Thomas College at 4 p.m.


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