Beavers best Seahawks in NCAA first round

Alex Perry had two hits including an RBI first-inning single that tied the score at 1-1 with John Militano crossing the plate. (Photo by Ed Habershaw)
Alex Perry had two hits including an RBI first-inning single that tied the score at 1-1 with John Militano crossing the plate. (Photo by Ed Habershaw)

HARWICH, Mass. - Senior Jake Weiss (Irvine, Calif.) and sophomore Brian McHale (Ramsey, N.J.) combined for seven hits and seven RBI as fifth-seeded Babson notched a 14-3 victory over fourth-seeded Salve Regina in opening round play of the 2017 NCAA Division III New England Baseball Regional Championships Thursday morning at Whitehouse Field.
 
The Beavers (26-13) advance to take on the winner of Thursday's second game between top-seeded UMass Boston and eighth-seeded Penn State-Berks on Friday afternoon at 4:30 p.m.  The Seahawks (34-11) will square off with the loser of that second game on Friday morning at 9:30 a.m.
 
Babson snapped a 1-1 third inning tie with a three-run rally to take the lead for good on an RBI single by senior Jack Halpin (Glastonbury, Conn.), a fielder's choice by junior Ryan Arena (Yorktown Heights, N.Y.) and a sacrifice fly off the bat of sophomore Eric Jaun (Loveland, Ohio), and the Beavers extended that margin to 4-1 in the fourth on McHale's run scoring single.  Salve Regina sliced its deficit to 5-3 in the bottom of the frame on an RBI single by junior Sam Brito (Lincoln, R.I.) and a fielder's choice, but Babson got those runs back in the fifth on an error and a Weiss RBI single before breaking things open with a six-run sixth inning rally highlighted by a two-run single by Weiss and a two-run triple from McHale.  The winners closed out their scoring in the top of the eighth on McHale's run-scoring single down the left field line to account for the final margin.
 
McHale's four hits led an 18-hit attack for Babson, which received three hits each from Weiss and Jaun.  Halpin also plated a pair of runs for the Beavers in support of junior Teddy Carey (Upton, Mass.), who scattered five hits and struck out four over seven innings to improve to 6-3 on the season.  Junior Alex Perry (North Attleboro, Mass.) collected two hits as part of a seven-hit attack in the setback for Salve Regina, as junior Jimmy Fitzgerald (Canton, Mass.) allowed five hits and four runs over the first three innings on the mound in suffering his first loss in seven decisions on the spring for the Seahawks.