PASADENA (Mar. 13, 2017) – Sophomore Mark Burleson (Ladera Ranch, Calif. / Tesoro) cranked a third-inning home run, his team-leading third of the year, in Caltech baseball's 9-6 home victory over Southern Vermont College on Monday. The three-run shot sailed over the left field fence on a deep fly ball and represented the Beavers' fifth team home run of the season, with the other two having come from the bat of classmate Connor Moffatt (Charleston, W.Va./George Washington).
Burleson, who leads the team with 15 RBI, went 2-for-5 at the dish, stole his second base of the season and also scored three runs. His home run, however, did not put the Beavers up for good; while it did stake the hosts to a 3-1 lead, the Mountaineers took two back from sophomore starter Jonah Krop (Santa Monica, Calif. / Santa Monica) in the fourth inning to tie the game. The southpaw's clean innings were short and concise, however, and he finished the game with four strikouts in 5 1/3 innings of work. Regular Saturday afternoon starter Cortland Perry (New York, N.Y. / The Dalton School) came in from second base to relieve Krop, but promtply gave up a three-run home run to Mountaineers outfielder Zack Stacey, the very first batter he faced. He settled down afterward, though, to pitch out the victory with three clean final innings, striking out two batters and picking up the first win of his career.
After putting Perry in a position to earn the win with a big sixth inning, the Beavers gained some insurance in the seventh and eighth innings when Burleson and senior outfielder Kai Kirk (San Jose, Calif. / Wesleyan Univ.) came around to home plate. The error count made a big difference in the outcome as the Mountaineers had three to the Beavers' one in spite of outhitting the hosts. Caltech's big sixth inning came as a result of walks, hit batters and a big error that saw freshman outfielder Minjae Kim (Busan, South Korea / West Vancouver Secondary School) reach base on a throwing error from the catcher while junior Garrett Levine (Columbus, Ohio / Columbus Acad.) scored from second. Senior Schaeffer Reed (Miami, Fla. / Westminster Christian) also played an important role for the Beavers at the plate, collecting two hits and one RBI.
Head Coach Matthew Mark and the Beavers will return to the diamond this Saturday-Sunday, Mar. 18-19 when they host Bard College (0-2) from Annandale-on-Hudson, N.Y. for three games over two days.