#17 Baseball’s Ninth-Inning Comeback Bid Falls Short in 4-3 Loss to #25 LIU Post in NCAA Regional Winner’s Bracket Semi


When and Where: May 17, 2019 – Hooksett, N.H. (Penmen Field)
Score: Long Island University-LIU Post 4, Southern New Hampshire University 3
Records: LIU Post 38-14, SNHU 37-13

Junior Tom Blandini (Bow, N.H.) went 3-for-5 and hit a go-ahead solo home run in the third inning, but the 17th-ranked and second-seeded Southern New Hampshire University baseball team had its ninth-inning rally come up short in a 4-3 loss to third-seeded Long Island University-LIU Post on Friday in an NCAA East II Regional winner's bracket matchup at Penmen Field.


  • Blandini drove in a run and scored once.
  • Freshman Alex Kennedy (Braintree, Mass.) blasted his first career home run – a two-run, pinch-hit bomb in the ninth.
  • Redshirt-sophomore Marcus Chavez (Queens, N.Y.) and senior Joshua Zbierski (Stafford Springs, Conn.) were both 2-for-5.
  • Graduate student Chris Murphy (Billerica, Mass.) allowed one run on four hits over six-and-two-thirds innings, striking out six and walking three. He earned a no-decision.


  • LIU Post threatened in the top of the second, with a two-base error putting a pair in scoring position with just one out. Junior Pheonix Hernandez (Brooklyn, N.Y.) made a nice play at first to knock down a sharp grounder, hold the runner and record the out at first, before Murphy made it out of the sticky situation with a big punchout.
  • Southern New Hampshire took the first lead in the bottom of the third when Blandini golfed a low pitch out to right for a solo home run that made it 1-0.
  • Sophomore Idelson Taveras (Lawrence, Mass.) made a pair of terrific catches in center field in back-to-back innings, taking away what looked to be a home run from Andy Camilo in the fourth and then robbing Giovanni Ciaccio of extra bases when he crashed into the wall in the fifth.
  • The Pioneers mounted a two-out rally in the top of the seventh, with Ciaccio drawing a walk to end Murphy's outing. The Penmen went to sophomore Jeffrey Praml (Bridgewater, N.J.), who allowed a two-run homer to left off the bat of Christopher Wasson, as LIU Post jumped in front, 2-1.
  • LIU Post tacked on a pair of important two-out insurance runs in the top of the ninth on RBI singles from Wasson and Dave Brehm.
  • Southern New Hampshire made it interesting against the LIU Post bullpen in the bottom of the ninth. Redshirt-junior Joshua Goldstein (Haverhill, Mass.) started it with a leadoff base hit to right-center, before Kennedy stepped in and blasted a pinch-hit home run to dead center to trim the deficit to 4-3. The Pioneers then went to ECC Pitcher of the Year Joshua Loeschorn, who allowed a single to right-center from Blandini, before notching back-to-back outs. Sophomore Dakota Mulcay (Goffstown, N.H.) extended the game with a base hit to right-center, but Loeschorn would end it with a groundout to second.


  • Junior Jake Coro (Johnston, R.I.) went 1-for-3.
  • Goldstein (run) and Mulcay (walk) were both 1-for-4.
  • Sophomore Sam Henrie (Middleboro, Mass.) finished 1-for-5.
  • Praml (5-1) suffered his first loss, allowing one run on three hits in an inning-and-a-third, striking out one.
  • Redshirt-junior Brendan Welch (Easton, Mass.) was charged with a run without allowing a hit in two-thirds of an inning.
  • Senior Matthew Messier (No. Troy, Vt.) relinquished a run on two hits and did not record an out.
  • Redshirt-sophomore Alex Gomes (Peabody, Mass.) tossed a third of an inning, striking out one and walking one.


  • Southern New Hampshire had won nine of its last 11.
  • SNHU falls to 24-16 (.600) all-time in its eighth NCAA Championship appearance, including 1-1 against LIU Post.
  • The Penmen dip to 17-5 at home this season and are now 92-22 (.807) at Penmen Field since the start of the 2014 season.
  • The home run allowed by Praml was his first since March 1.
  • Kennedy is now 4-for-5 with a home run, two RBI and two runs scored in two NCAA Championship contests.


  • The Penmen will now take on the winner of sixth-seeded Felician University and seventh-seeded Assumption College on Friday night (9 p.m.) in an elimination contest.

For the latest on Southern New Hampshire University athletics, follow the Penmen via social media on TwitterFacebookYoutube and Instagram. Sign up to receive text message alerts and e-mail newsletters about your favorite Penmen teams here.