After a crushing 7-1 loss against the Harvard Crimsons, the Fairfield Stags looked to bounce back in the second game of Saturday’s double header. After seven scoreless innings, Fairfield’s offense finally woke up in the eighth inning to score eight and give Fairfield the 8-6 victory. “We have a better hitting team than we’ve been showing lately and hopefully that gave us a little confidence right there,” says head coach Bill Currier on the come from behind victory.

On the mound for the Stags was Gavin Wallace ‘18 going up against Harvard’s Sean Poppen. Wallace started the game with some solid pitching as he allowed only one run on five hits to keep the Stags close.

In the top half of the fifth inning, Harvard started with a leadoff double off the bat of Drew Reid ‘17. Harvard’s next batter would reach base via a walk after four consecutive balls, Wallace would then hit the next batter to load the bases.

With the bases loaded, Harvard’s Patrick McColl came up to bat. After forcing a full count, McColl popped out to deep right field to push in the first run of the game. Wallace would walk the next batter to load the bases once again and with that came Currier’s decision to make a pitching change.

Senior Aaron Howell comes in to replace Wallace with the bases loaded and only one out. Howell threw two wild pitches to force in two runs for Harvard as they pushed their lead to 3-0. Harvard would add on to their lead in the top of the seventh inning as they added two more runs on three hits to extend their lead to 6-0.

Sophomore Drew Arciuolo opened the top half of the eighth inning with a single off a bunt for the Stags followed by another single off the bat of Michael Conti ‘17. The very next batter was Tim Zeng ‘19 who battled off some tough pitches to force a 3-2 count and eventually walked to load the bases.

Now with the bases loaded, Troy Scocca ‘17 came up to bat and reached base on a walk to force in Fairfield’s first run of the game. After a quick pitching change from Harvard, Jake Salpietro ‘16 stepped up to the plate in a tight situation with the bases loaded and no outs. On the very first pitch at bat, Salpietro smacked a ball to left field to drive in another run for Fairfield.

Senior Brendan Tracy followed up with a single to cut Harvard’s lead down to just three after trailing by six for the majority of the game. Up next to bat for the Stags was Mac Crispino ‘17, who stepped up to plate with the bases loaded. “I wasn’t hitting the ball hard at all today and I just wanted to hit it hard because when you hit a hard one good things seem to happen,” says Crispino of his mentality coming to the plate. Crispino jumped on an early pitch for a single to drive two runs home. Tracy scored the tying run on the play due to a wild throw from Harvard’s right fielder as Fairfield had now brought the game to six.

Freshman Tyler Gambardella came into the game to pitch against Crispino for the winning run. Gambardella beat out a dribbler off the bat of Jack Gethings ‘19 to give Fairfield’s first lead of the game. Fairfield’s final punch would come when Conti singled up the middle for the second time in the inning to give Fairfield its eighth run in the inning.

With the lead at hand, Fairfield called on Mike Bonaiuto ‘19 to close out the game and he did just that, earning his first save on the season. He saved the game with Peter Horn ‘19, who earned his first collegiate victory by throwing two shutout innings. Fairfield’s next game will be on Wednesday, March 30 as they host Hofstra at Alumni Diamond.

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