FORT MYERS, Fla. – On the Opening Day of the 2017 season, the Haverford College baseball team (1-1) split a doubleheader with John Carroll. The Fords posted a come from behind win over the Blue Streaks, 6-5, in walk-off fashion during the first contest before dropping the second contest 8-2. Sam Partee was 3-for-5 on the day with three RBI while Will Karp added three hits in the pair of games at the Gene Cusic Collegiate Classic.
The Fords wasted no time with an offensive outburst in the bottom of the first inning against John Carroll starter Drew Vargo. Karp singled and advanced to second on an error ahead of a triple from Ethan Lee-Tyson for a 1-0 lead, pushing across the first run of the season before an out was recorded in the contest. With two down in the frame, Spencer Sohmer homered to bring home Lee-Tyson and give Haverford an early 3-0 lead.
John Carroll rallied in the fifth inning for a 5-3 advantage. The Blue Streaks tied the contest on an error, a bases-loaded hit by pitch and a wild pitch before Derek Penman and Nathan Reich each punched RBI singles into the outfield to give JCU a two-run advantage.
In the sixth, Haverford rallied against new hurler Ryan Bastien, scoring a run with two outs. Matt Goss and Yannick Villanueva coaxed walks out of Bastien and Villanueva stole second, scoring on a throwing error by the John Carroll catcher to pull Haverford to within one at 5-4.
Bastien walked Karp to lead off the seventh inning and was promptly replaced by Steven Virost, who was looking to nail down a win. Virost walked Lee-Tyson and Haverford put two into scoring position with a passed ball. Ben Verducci singled to tie the score at 5-5.
After Sohmer was walked intentionally to load the bases; Partee hit a sacrifice fly to center for a walk-off 6-5 win in seven innings.
On the mound, Tom Phillips got the ball for Haverford and went four frames, allowing just three hits and no earned runs while striking out a pair of batters. Austin Castellanos (1-0) was awarded the win with two hitless innings in his collegiate debut.
In the second game, Haverford fell behind 2-0 early as John Carroll pushed across a pair of runs on a wild pitch and an RBI single from Joe Charpentier. Partee poked an RBI single to left field in the fourth inning to cut the lead to 2-1 against Fred Moore (1-0).
In the fifth inning, A walk and a double from Matthew Donnelly gave JCU some breathing room at 3-1, but the Fords responded yet again at the plate. Verducci walked to lead off the top of the sixth and Partee doubled to left center to cut the John Carroll lead to 3-2. A five run sixth inning, capped by a two-RBI single from Donnelly, allowed the Blue Streaks to pull away at 8-2.
Dylan Livingston (0-1) went four innings for Haverford, allowing three earned runs while walking three and striking out three. Daniel Joffe pitched the final two innings in relief, allowing just one earned run and striking out one.
Haverford returns to action as the Gene Cusic Collegiate Classic continues with Monday play. Haverford will play yet another doubleheader, this time taking on Thiel in a matinee twinbill, with games starting at approximately 9:00 a.m. and 12:00 p.m. A live video stream will be available for the contests.