NASHUA, N.H. -- The Brandeis University baseball team was on the wrong side of a pitcher's duel today, as the Judges dropped a 2-0 decision in their first-ever meeting with Daniel Webster College. Brandeis falls to 13-16, while DWC improves to 11-17.
Brandeis was held to just four hits by a quartet of Daniel Webster pitchers. Kieran Koch (1-2) allowed just two hits over the first six innings, earning the win in the process. He struck out two, walked two and hit a batter. Derek Dolan, Jon Merritt, and Mike Patane combined to allow two hits over the final three innings with Patane picking up his fourth save in the ninth.
Judge junior Elio Fernandez (Bronx, N.Y./Fordham Prep) suffered the loss to fall to 2-3 on the campaign. Fernandez allowed just two earned runs in seven innings of work, his third-longest outing of the season. He gave up seven hits and struck out four, but worked around two walks and three hit batters.
Fernandez escaped a jam of his own making in the bottom of the first. After loading the bases with two hit-by-pitches and a walk, Fernandez induced a comebacker to the mound and started a 1-2-3 double play.
In the third, the Eagles struck for the only run they would need. Dan Ierardi singled to short with one out, then scored three batters later on a base hit by Erick Bourdeau. Fernandez nearly got out of another jam in the sixth after a leadoff double Dan Quinn. Quinn was still there two batters later when Brett Wood plated him with a single to center.
Brandeis never got a runner past second base, but sophomore CF Sam Miller (Sudbury, Mass./Lincoln-Sudbury) made himself a threat, reaching in three of his four plate appearances. He singled to lead off the third and moved up on junior SS Brian Allen's (Concord, N.H./Central Catholic) single, but Koch got two pop-ups to end the inning. In the seventh, Miller singled and stole second with two away, and in the ninth he reached second on an error in the outfield with two gone, but the Judges couldn't come up with the big hit to get him home.
Brandeis's best chance may have been in the eighth inning, when Allen led off with a single and senior Brian Ing (Sandwich, Mass./Sandwich) walked, but Merritt got a foul out, a fly ball and a grounder to second to shut down the threat.
Brandeis returns to action tomorrow at Salve Regina for a 3:30 p.m. start. Daniel Webster hosts in-state rival Keene State for two on Sunday at 2 p.m.