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Big Green Win in ICS Tune-Up

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Ennis Coble reached base each of his three trips to the plate on Tuesday against Hartford.     By Mark Washburn
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HANOVER, N.H. — Dartmouth scored 11 runs in the first three innings, then gradually emptied its bench as it cruised to a 13-6 victory over visiting Hartford under overcast skies on Tuesday afternoon at Red Rolfe Field at Biondi Park. Eight of the nine starters scored and drove in at least one run apiece as the Big Green won for the 14th times in their last 15 games to improve to 23-16 on the season. This was the final game for Dartmouth before traveling to Ithaca, N.Y., this weekend to play at Cornell in the best-of-three Ivy Championship Series.

Hartford fell to 10-35 on the season despite collecting 15 hits, with Brian Estevez, Simon Kudernatsch and Andy Drexel each recording three.

The Hawks took an early 1-0 lead in the first inning when Estevez singled and came all the way around from first to score on a Kudernatsch double to right-center.

But Dartmouth quickly responded thanks to some wildness on the part of Hartford starter Freddy Andujar (4-2). Senior Joe Sclafani and freshman Thomas Roulis both drew walks before junior Ennis Coble ripped a hard grounder past a diving second baseman for an RBI single, tying the game. Sophomore Dustin Selzer, who leads the Ivy League in RBIs, followed with a sinking liner that the center fielder could not cut off for a two-run triple. After another walk to sophomore Jeff Keller, freshman Matt Robinson dropped a single to left, and two outs later, senior Jake Carlson pulled a ball just inside third base to drive in Keller. Carlson was gunned down trying to stretch the hit into a double, however, leaving the score at 5-1 after one stanza.

The middle of the Hawk order got to Big Green hurler Louis Concato in the third with three consecutive two-out singles, the last by Brian Hunter, to scored Hartford’s second run of the afternoon.

Again the Big Green responded with a big inning scoring six times in the bottom half of the third. Andujar loaded the bases on walks before leaving in favor of reliever Charlie Moran, who was greeted by freshman Nick Lombardi with a soft liner just over the second baseman’s head for an RBI single. Freshman Matt MacDowell sent a sacrifice fly to left, then Carlson was plunked to load the bases again. Two more runs came home on Sclafani’s hard single through the right side, then Roulis and Coble each singled home another run for an 11-2 Dartmouth lead.

In the fourth, the Green tacked on a pair of unearned runs with Carlson delivering an run-scoring single and Roulis bringing Carlson around with a double down the right-field line.

Concato (4-1) finished up the fourth inning, then was replaced to keep his pitch count down to be ready for the upcoming series at Cornell. The sophomore right-hander gave up two runs in his four frames, yielding seven hits and a walk while fanning two.

Hartford loaded the bases on three straight singles against sophomore reliever Mike Dodakian, but the right-hander limited the damage by inducing a double play that allowed a run to score, then getting the final out on a comebacker.

The Hawks added a solitary run in the sixth against freshman Chris England and two more in the eighth as Kudernatsch drove in one in each inning. Freshman Nick Nelson made his collegiate debut on the mound in the ninth, retiring the side in order while striking out the final batter to finish the victory.

Head coach Bob Whalen started going to his bench in the fourth, and by the eighth, each starter had been replaced as freshman Matt Henkel and Jay Graham got on the field for the first time.

The Ivy Championship Series begins on Saturday with a doubleheader at Cornell’s Hoy Field at noon, with a game if necessary on Sunday at 1 p.m. Hartford continues its season with another non-conference game tomorrow at Central Connecticut State at 3 p.m.

Notes: The Big Green drew a season-high 13 walks in the game and were out-hit, 15-12 … Sclafani was 1-for-2 with three walks on the day, giving him 97 bases on balls in his career, breaking Dartmouth’s all-time record held by Jim Lavery ’86 … with Carlson going 2-for-2 and getting hit by a pitch, he has now reached base 26 times in his last 33 trips to the plate (16 hits, five walks, three hit by pitches, two errors) … Selzer upped his league-leading RBI total to 40 … Dartmouth has won all 19 of its games on its home field against teams outside the Ivy League since the FieldTurf was installed before the 2009 season.