Offense Surges as Baseball Topples Bucknell, 9-8

Offense Surges as Baseball Topples Bucknell, 9-8

Minato tallied a career-best three hits (Fran Ruchalski).

PORT CHARLOTTE, Fla. – Holding off a ninth-inning rally, Harvard baseball picked up a 9-8 victory over Bucknell at North Regional Park on Tuesday.

Freshman Chad Minato, sophomore Trent Bryan and senior Josh Ellis led the offense with three hits apiece, while Harvard tallied a season-best 14 hits on the day. Senior Drew Reid had a game-high three RBI, while sophomore Patrick McColl and Ellis drove in two of their own. Freshman Grant Stone got the start, earning his first career win after spreading seven hits and three earned runs over 5.2 innings.

Bucknell (6-6) got on the board, 1-0, in the second, but Harvard (6-3) immediately responded in the top of the third with a two-run single off the bat of McColl. The Bison regained the lead, 3-2 with a pair of singles in the third, and tacked on a fourth run in the fifth.

The Crimson took control with a three-hit, four-run sixth inning, as sophomore Patrick Robinson, Minato and Bryan all reached base to open the inning. Following a Bucknell pitching change, Reid laced a double through the left side to clear the bases and give Harvard a 5-4 lead. Reid later scored on a passed ball to double the Crimson advantage.

The Crimson tacked on three runs in the ninth, taking a 9-4 lead. Following a single by junior John Fallon and a walk from Robinson, Minato drove home pinch runner Chase Aldridge with an RBI single through the left side, and three batters later Ellis followed with a two-RBI single into left field.

Bucknell tallied four runs in the final frame, closing the gap to 9-8, but freshman Kieran Shaw forced a two-out flyout to end the game.

Harvard faces Massachusetts on Wednesday, March 14 in Port Charlotte at North Regional Park. First pitch is set for 10:30 a.m.