The Keene State baseball team is currently enduring a season that has had more downs than ups, but North Kingstown graduate Wyatt Daft has stood out this spring amid the losing campaign.
Playing a role in 24 of the Owls’ 28 games to date, the ex-Skipper has shown the way at the plate, hitting at a team-leading .338 clip with three doubles, eight runs driven in and five stolen bases.
While he has not been able to string together a lengthy hitting streak, Daft has nonetheless delivered ten multi-hit games, including a 3-for-4 afternoon against fellow Little East member Castleton on April 12.
After picking up base hits in the third and sixth innings, the freshman saved his most important swing for the bottom of the ninth, drilling a single down the left field line with one out that plated Mike Collins and Josh Beayon to tie the game at five apiece.
Daft’s hit completed a three-run rally that was in direct response to the three-spot that the visiting Spartans put up on the scoreboard in their half of the ninth, necessitating extra innings to break the deadlock.
Keene State reliever Gregory Esposito retired the Castleton side in order in the top of the tenth, setting the table for Collins to drive home Beayon with a two-out, walk-off double that gave the Owls a 6-5 victory.
It was the most recent win that the Keene State nine has notched, as the now 6-22 Owls have since dropped their last seven in a row, including doubleheader sweeps by conference opponents UMass-Boston and Western Connecticut.
With a half-dozen games remaining on the docket, Keene State will be trying to finish the season on a higher note, starting with their second and final meeting of the spring with Castleton on Tuesday, followed by a Saturday twinbill with Southern Maine.
McCarthy chipping in at Catholic
North Kingstown product Justin McCarthy has had to play the waiting game in his first season as a member of the baseball team at Catholic, mainly coming off the bench as a late-inning replacement for the 25-10 Cardinals.
Although he has not been able to become a regular in the lineup this spring, the former Skipper has managed to record five hits - with three of those being doubles - and just as many runs batted in.
In one of his handful of starts among the 15 contests that he has seen action in, McCarthy went 2-for-3 against intra-District opponent Gallaudet on April 6, driving home three runs in Catholic’s 18-4 rout of the Bison.
The Cardinals are currently top of the heap in the Landmark Conference, owning a league record of 11-4 going into the final weekend of the regular season, which will see them pay a visit to Susquehanna for a three-game series beginning on Friday.