Immediate Release: April 18, 2004
Contact: David Berman (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Bearcats trounce UMBC 21-1 in most lopsided win in five years
BALTIMORE, Md.--Eight different Bearcats had at least two hits and Binghamton (15-9, 5-1 America East) had 12 extra-base hits in a 21-1 blowout of conference foe UMBC (6-23, 1-5 AE). The win completed a weekend sweep of the Retrievers and continued one of the most explosive streaks of offense in school history. The Bearcats have scored 78 runs in their last six games and are averaging 7.6 runs per game for the season. The offensive output and margin of victory were the most since a 28-1 victory over Southern Vermont on April 30, 1999.
Binghamton had already built a 7-1 lead by the time it erupted for a 14-run sixth inning. The inning featured six doubles, two walks and a two-run home run by the Bearcats. BU sent 18 men to the plate in the frame, and at one point 13 straight batters reached base safely. Freshmen infielders Matt Simek (Vestal, N.Y.) and Brendon Hitchcock (Laceyville, Pa./Wyalusing Valley) led the charge, as each drove in three runs in the inning. Hitchcock doubled twice in the inning while Simek had an RBI double and two-run single. Senior outfielder T.J. Kowalchuk (Stormville, N.Y./Carmel) homered, while senior third baseman Jay Balback (Millsboro, Del./Indiana Inst. of Tech.) and junior first baseman Jamie Boyer (Lancaster, Pa./Manheim Township) each drove in a pair of runs.
Balback was 4-for-6 and scored four runs in the game. He hit a solo homer in the fifth inning for his fourth home run in the two-day series. He raised his batting average to .422 on the season and took over the team lead with nine home runs. Twenty-two of Balback's 38 hits this season have been for extra bases, and he sports an .878 slugging percentage for the season.
Three Binghamton pitchers combined to hold the Retrievers to just six hits. Senior Andy Hutchings (Binghamton, N.Y./College of Charleston) started and pitched the first 3 2/3 innings. He allowed just one hit and struck out three while allowing just an unearned run in the fourth. Junior Chris Darling (Whitesboro, N.Y.) earned his second win of the year with 4 1/3 innings of shutout relief. He has now worked 11 1/3 innings this season without allowing an earned run.
The Bearcats visit Siena on Tuesday at 4 p.m. before welcoming conference rival Maine to town for a three-game series next weekend.
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