Baseball clinches NESCAC Championship quarterfinal series win

Hamilton College’s Jackson Sattinger ’24 and Jack Eshleman ’25 combined on a one-hit shutout and the Continentals advanced to the 2022 NESCAC Baseball Championship Weekend with a 4-0 win against the Trinity College Bantams in Game 3 of a NESCAC quarterfinal series at Hamilton’s Loop Road Athletic Complex on Sunday.

The Continentals (18-15 overall), who are the No. 2 seed in the conference’s West Division, set a team record with their 18th win this season. Hamilton will play an opponent yet to be determined at Trinity’s DiBenedetto Stadium on Friday, May 13. Middlebury College (West No. 1), Colby College (East No. 2) and Amherst College (West No. 4) join the Continentals in Hartford next weekend.

The Bantams (15-20) were the third seed in the conference’s East Division. Trinity forced Sunday’s deciding third game with a 6-4 win in Game 2 after Hamilton took the opener 15-0 on Saturday afternoon.

Sattinger (2-2) walked two and allowed just a single in the second inning to James Stefanowicz in seven spectacular innings. Sattinger lowered his earned run average to 3.70 and opponents are hitting just .182 against him. Eshleman tossed two perfect innings in relief as the Bantams did not get a runner past second base all day. The Continentals recorded their second shutout in as many days.

Shane Dux ’24 led Hamilton’s offense as he went 3-for-3 with two runs batted in. Brady Slinger ’22 added two singles and scored two runs. Slinger, who Is hitting .417 in 120 at-bats, set a team record with his 50th hit this season in the bottom of the fifth. Wes Mayberry had held the old mark of 49 hits since 2009. Slinger also stole three bases and has 26 this season.

The Continentals scored two runs in the bottom of the second inning with the benefit of just one hit. Jack Herlihy ’22 led off with a walk and Dux singled to center field. Gavin Schaefer-Hood ’22 drew a walk and Adam Wijaya ’22 forced in the first run with another free pass. Dux later scored on a fielder’s choice off the bat of Jay Schlaefer ’23.

Hamilton made it 3-0 the next inning. Slinger smacked a one-out single to center and stole second and third base. With two outs, Dux hit a hot shot back up the middle that struck the lip of the rubber on top of the pitcher’s mound and the ball popped high into the air. Dux was safe at first on an infield single and Slinger scored.

The Continentals added the final run in the fifth. Slinger led off with a single up the middle and stole second. Herlihy’s ground ball found a hole on the right side and Slinger moved to third. Dux followed with a hard single to left center that plated Slinger.

Trinity managed one baserunner over the last four innings. In the top of the fifth with two outs and a runner on second, Yoshi Omi-Jarrett hit a shot to deep left field, but Phil Bernstein ’23 tracked it down right in front of the wall. In the seventh Stefanowicz hammered a drive to straight away center that Schlaefer flagged down on an impressive over-the-shoulder catch with his back to home plate.

Eshleman got the final out on a fly ball to left that Bernstein secured. His catch touched off a wild celebration by his teammates in the middle of the infield.

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