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Baseball Battles BC, Holy Cross This Week

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By Tom McNeill (
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HANOVER, N.H. — The Dartmouth baseball team is looking to regroup with midweek battles at Boston College (10-20) and at home against Holy Cross (10-17) this week after dropping three of four contests over the weekend to Columbia and Penn.

First up is a trip to Chestnut Hill, Mass., to take on the Eagles of the ACC at 3:30 p.m. (scheduled time pushed back half an hour). Last year, BC handed the Big Green a 9-5 loss in Hanover, the first time a non-conference team had won a game on the turf of Red Rolfe Field at Biondi Park since the place was renovated before the 2009 season.

Head coach Bob Whalen will be testing to see if lightning can strike twice by sending junior right-hander Chris England (0-0, 10.29 ERA) to start on the mound for Dartmouth. Two years ago in his only other career start, England defeated the Eagles at Shea Field, 9-6. He was unable to pitch last season due to an injury, and has thrown just seven innings thus far in 2014.

At the plate, Dartmouth is led by senior right fielder Jeff Keller, hitting an even .300 with 10 doubles, a homer, 14 runs scored and nine RBIs. Overall the offense has struggled thus far, averaging just 3.4 runs per game. But with six regulars in the lineup that have been named to the All-Ivy First Team during their careers, the Dartmouth bats are a sleeping volcano on the verge of erupting.

On Wednesday, the Big Green return to Biondi Park where they, despite a 1-4 mark thus far, are 68-14 (.829 winning percentage) since beginning play there in 2009. Dartmouth has won the last five meetings with the Crusaders, including a 19-4 blowout in Worcester last year. Holy Cross does have a substantial lead in the overall series that dates back to 1894, owning a 91-53-1 mark against the Big Green, but Dartmouth has had much more success in recent years having won 20 of the last 27 encounters over the last 32 years.

Sophomore right-hander Adam Charnin-Aker (0-2, 7.59), the son of former big league hurler Jack Aker, is the probable starter for the Big Green. He has shown excellent control with just one walk and eight strikeouts in 10.2 innings this year, and held Nebraska Omaha to two runs over six innings in his first outing in two years since undergoing Tommy John surgery.

Admission at Red Rolfe Field at Biondi Park is free, and those that cannot make it to the ball park can watch online in high-definition by subscribing to Big Green Insider on the Ivy League Digital Network. An audio broadcast of the game, featuring Wayne Young ’72 with the call, will also be available for free through Big Green Insider, and fans can follow along with live stats on the official site of Dartmouth athletics, First pitch is scheduled for 3 p.m.