When and Where: May 26, 2018 – Cary, N.C. (USA Baseball National Training Complex)
Score: Augustana (S.D.) University 5, Southern New Hampshire University 2
Records: Augustana 49-9, SNHU 39-16
Senior Kyle Pangallo (Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.) blasted a two-run homer that made it a one-run game in the second inning, but the fourth-seeded Southern New Hampshire University baseball team dropped a 5-2 decision to fifth-seeded Augustana (S.D.) on Saturday in the NCAA Division II Baseball Championship opener at the USA Baseball National Training Complex in Cary, N.C.
Southern New Hampshire making its second appearance in the College World Series, will now play in an elimination contest Sunday, May 27 (4 p.m.) against the eighth-seeded University of Southern Indiana.
Augustana jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the top of the first inning against redshirt-junior Jake Walkinshaw (Seymour, Conn.), taking advantage of three Penmen errors and a base hit. Riley Johnson reached on a throwing error and then moved to third on a second throwing miscue on the same play, before coming home when Michal Svozil, who walked, stole second and the throw went into centerfield. Svozil then came home with the second run when Jordan Barth singled through the left side.
The Penmen threatened in the home half when senior Caleb Potter (Mentor, Ohio) tripled to left-center with two outs, but he was stranded there.
The Vikings added to their lead in the second, as singles from Lucas Barry and JT Mix put runners at the corners with one out, before a bunt single from Johnson brought in the run to make it 3-0. Sophomore Wesley Tobin (Portsmouth, N.H.) then came on to record the final two outs, including a great play at third from sophomore Tom Blandini (Bow, N.H.), with a nice pick by redshirt-senior Ryan Sullivan (Hopkinton, Mass.) at the other end, to get out of the inning.
Southern New Hampshire came to life in the bottom of the second when freshman Sam Henrie (Middleboro, Mass.) drew a one-out walk, with Pangallo hammering a two-out, two-run homer to left two batters later to pull the Penmen within 3-2.
After an hour-and-43-minute rain delay to start the bottom of the fifth, Augustana loaded the bases in the sixth against Tobin, before senior Mitchell Powers (Portland, Maine) came on, but allowed a two-run double to right off the bat of Johnson to make it 5-2. Powers then punched out the next two batters to make it out of the jam.
Following Pangallo's second-inning home run, until his one-out double in the eighth, Augustana starter Tyler Mitzel retired 17-in-a-row. Pangallo was left at second in the eighth.
Graduate student Thomas Buonopane (Peabody, Mass.) led off the ninth by lining a single to left-center, but he was also stranded in scoring position.
Pangallo finished 2-for-3 with a pair of RBI and a run scored, while Potter and Buonopane were each 1-for-4.
Walkinshaw was charged with three runs – two earned – on four hits over one-and-a-third innings, while striking out two and walking a batter. Tobin tossed four innings, allowing two runs on four hits with three strikeouts. Powers fired three-and-two-thirds scoreless frames, giving up a pair of hits, while fanning five and walking one.
- Southern New Hampshire falls to 21-14 (.600) all-time in NCAA Tournament play, including 1-3 (.250) in the World Series.
- The loss snaps a four-game NCAA postseason winning streak – the second longest in program history.
- The Penmen lose for just the fourth time in their last 24 contests.
- After not making an error in the entire East Regional, SNHU committed three in the first inning.
- Pangallo's home run was his first of the season and the second of his Penmen career. His last home run came March 15, 2017 in an 8-6 win at Nova Southeastern University,
The Penmen return to action Sunday (4 p.m.) in an elimination contest against Southern Indiana.
For more information on the NCAA Division II Baseball Championship, click HERE.
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