The Huskies fell to Georgia State 7-3 Sunday at Friedman Diamond, but NU starter Les Williams pitched through several bouts of bad luck and two errors to keep his team within striking distance of the Panthers.
“Les threw one of his better games today,” Northeastern head coach Neil McPhee said. “He gave up two infield hits in the first inning and one or two other infield hits that eventually scored. But he stopped the bleeding. That’s a very good performance and a very good sign and its a good example to every pitcher [on the staff]. When things aren’t going your way, it almost seems unfair out there, but that’s life. You’ve got to battle it and he did.”
The Panthers scraped across a run in the first, second and fifth innings.
Brendan Stokes and Mike Tamsin each singled for NU in the the first, but Georgia State’s Ryan Moore was able to escape a first and third, one out jam by striking out James Donaldson and Frank Pesanello.
Moore held Northeastern hitless until the sixth, when Tamsin lined a single that went off the glove of a diving Theo Asher at first base and trickled into right field. Donaldson fouled out and then Pesanello slammed his fifth home run of the season over the left field bullpens to slice the Panthers’ lead to 3-2.
Andrew Leenhouts, who got the last out of the sixth in relief of Williams, gave up a two run single to Carl Moniz in the seventh. Leenhouts was victimized by shortstop Ryan Maguire’s error, which allowed Chase Childers to reach and set the stage for Moniz’s two out single.
Leenhouts cruised through the eighth before giving up a two run, wind blown home run to Marc Mimeault.
“Drew didn’t have his good fastball today, but so what,” McPhee said. “His breaking ball was good. He’s a freshman, he’s been continuously thrown into the fire of the CAA. This can only help him in the future.”
Pesanello lined his second home run of the game leading off the ninth against Aidan Francis to pull NU to within 7-3. The Huskies got the next two men on, but Francis struck out the remaining three batters to slam the door and give Georgia State (25-14, 8-4) the win, allowing them to remain in second place in the CAA. Northeastern (19-14, 6-6) slipped to seventh, one spot out of a playoff berth with just under a month left in the season.
Moore (4-1, 4.31) went seven and a 1/3 innings, striking out six while allowing two runs on five hits. Williams (1-1, 3.32) pitched five and 2/3 innings, allowing three runs (one earned) and nine hits while striking out four and walking none.
The Huskies host Rhode Island (24-12-1, 12-1 A-10 today at 3 p.m. JT Ross (2-1, 4.50) will get the start for NU.