The Tech baseball team shattered a single-game program record with 33 hits en route to a 295 victory over Middlebury College in the Greater Phoenix Invitational. Despite the loss of four key starters and a completely revamped lineup, it took only three games for MIT baseball to once again assert its position among the top teams in the New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC).
The Panthers had no answers for MIT's (21) attack on Tuesday. The Engineers scored in six different innings, plating at least five runners in four different innings. Stephen C. Toth '09 powered the attack with a break-out performance at the plate. Toth finished 6-for-6 with a walk, while scoring four runs and driving in a game-high seven runs. Toth's six hits tied the Institute record for hits in a game, which was originally set by Herbert K. Kummer '75 in his senior year.
Obviously, Toth wasn't the only one seeing the ball well against Middlebury (33). Eight players recorded at least three hits and 10 players produced an RBI. Stewart J. Park '10 drove home five runs while going 3-for-8, while Steven M. Nunez '09 and David M. Nole '09 each picked up three runs batted in and combined for seven runs scored. Park's eight at-bats also tied an MIT single-game record set three times during the 1972 campaign.
The Engineers scored seven times in the first inning, collecting all of their runs with two outs. MIT repeated the two-out magic again in the second inning, scoring five more times. After tacking on another run in the third, MIT led 131 heading to the fourth.
With one out in the fourth inning, MIT substantially expanded its lead with seven more runs. After an RBI single by Jason T. Witzberger '07, Thomas M. Phillips '09, Nole, and Kevin R. Wheeler '08 answered with three consecutive doubles. Toth added one of his three doubles later in the inning to push the margin to 19 runs. MIT closed the tilt with an Institute record nine doubles, including Toth's three, which tied another school mark last clubbed by Joel Morales '99 in 1997.
The Engineers established a plethora of offensive marks in Tuesday's win. The 29 runs batted in topped a record that had stood for 40 years, while new records were established for extra base hits (11) and total bases (46).
Benjamin T. Bersanti '10 filled in admirably in the lead-off role, reaching base four times, while connecting for a single, double, and triple. Amid all the offensive fireworks, Jay M. Turner '08 made his season debut against the Panthers, scattering four earned runs while hurling a complete game.