LAWRENCE, Kan. — Dartmouth dug itself an early hole out of which it could not climb as Nebraska Omaha handed the Big Green a 12-5 defeat on Tuesday afternoon at Kansas University’s Hoglund Ballpark. Brett Bass had three hits and drove in three runs to led the 15-hit attack for the Mavericks (9-8).
Junior Matt Parisi and freshman Michael Ketchmark each had two hits for Dartmouth (1-6), which lost its fifth straight game. One of Parisi’s hits was a solo home run, the first for the Big Green this season, while Ketchmark added a triple to the offensive effort.
Omaha jumped on Big Green junior left-hander Adam Frank (0-1) from the outset of the game and knocked him from the box before the side could be retired in the first inning. The Mavericks loaded the bases on a single, hit batter and throwing error on a sacrifice bunt, setting the stage for Bass to provide the game’s first run with a sacrifice fly to right. A walk loaded the bases again, and Tyler Splichal followed with a single up the middle to plate a run. Another fly to right, this time off the bat of Dawson Porter, brought home the third run of the inning, and when Danny Suiter drew a walk to fill the bases, Frank’s afternoon was done.
Freshman Michael Concato was summoned from the bullpen, but Collin Leif worked him for a walk to force in a run, and Cole Gruber singled for the second time in the inning to drive in the fifth and final tally.
The two sides traded runs in the fourth. First, Clayton Taylor doubled, took third on a Bass bunt single and scored on Caleb Palensky’s poke through the right side of the infield for an RBI single. Then in the bottom half, Ketchmark swatted his triple and trotted home on a double off the bat of sophomore Joe Purritano.
In the fifth, Omaha slapped two more runs on the board as Gruber drew a one-out walk, stole second and came around on an Alex Schultz double for the Mavericks. One out later, Bass ripped a double to plate Schultz to give Omaha an 8-1 lead.
But with two gone in the Dartmouth half, Parisi got hold of a 2-2 pitch and deposited it over the left-field fence, just his second career home run.
In the seventh, junior right-hander Chris England made his season debut and first trip to the mound since May 1, 2012. But the Mavericks were not done at the plate as Bass greeted him by recording his third RBI of the day with a single. Dartmouth had a golden opportunity to take a chunk out of the seven-run deficit, loading the bases with nobody out. Freshman Ben Socher came on and brought home a run with a grounder to short, but that was all the Green could muster.
Omaha tacked on three more runs in the eighth on a two-run double by Suiter and a grounder to second by Gruber to score Suiter from third.
Dartmouth made one last play for a miracle comeback in the ninth thanks to some wildness by reliever Andrew Dergan. Two walks and a Socher single — his first collegiate hit — loaded the bases with no one out, but some tough luck struck as Parisi’s line drive went directly to the right fielder for an out. Pinch hitter Ryan Toimil drew a walk to force in a run, and senior Jeff Keller sent a deep fly to center to score another, but the third out came on another liner, this time to the third baseman.
Tyler Hamer (1-1) picked up the win in relief of Steven Schoonover by pitching three innings and yielding two runs on two hits and a walk while striking out one batter. Schoonover tossed the first four frames and surrendered just one run on four hits.
The two teams will play again on Wednesday afternoon at Hoglund Ballpark with first pitch commencing at 2 p.m. (CDT).
Scheduling note: The first game of the series against Kansas on Friday has been moved to two hours later at 6 p.m. due to the Jayhawks' first game in the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament which starts at 3 p.m.