Baseball Opens 2011 Season Saturday

Baseball Opens 2011 Season Saturday

March 11, 2011

NORTH DARTMOUTH, MA-The University of Massachusetts Dartmouth's baseball team is looking to move up in the Little East Conference this spring. UMass Dartmouth will begin their 2010 season when play Curry Saturday on the first game of their spring trip to Winter Haven, FL.

The Corsairs, who finished fifth in the LEC last season and lost to Keene State and Southern Maine at the LEC Tournament. "We hope to improve on our performance from last year," said UMass Dartmouth Head Coach Bob Curran. "Our infield defense should be solid, with everyone back, and we have (seniors) Matt Ryan (Uxbridge, MA/Uxbridge HS) and Zac Talis (Lynnfield, MA/Lynnfield HS) behind the plate. One will catch and one will be the DH. We're looking to start (junior) John Granahan (Hanover, MA/Hanover HS/Southern Maine) at third base, (senior) Ryan McDermott (Pembroke, MA/Pembroke HS) at shortstop, (sophomore) Ryan Levesque (Northridge, MA/Mount St. Charles Academy) at second base, and (junior) Anthony Fiorita (Reading, MA/St. John's Prep) at first. "

The outfield will be completely different. "We plan to use (erstwhile second baseman) Dan Demello (Jr. Taunton, MA/Taunton HS) in center field, (sophomore) Matt Worden (New Bedford, MA/New Bedford HS) in right, and a few guys in right, starting with (sophomore) Cory Albanese (Weymouth, MA/Weymouth HS)," said Curran. "(Senior) Brian Pedrotti (Dalton, MA/Wahconah HS) will move back into the starting rotation, with (junior) Pat Lavey (Cranston, RI/Cranston East HS) taking over as the closer. Pedrotti, (sophomore) Mike St. Martin (Worcester, MA/Doherty HS), (sophomore) Aaron Brunette (North Andover, MA/North Andover HS), (senior) Shane Campbell (Marlboro, MA/Marlboro HS), (sophomore) Tom Morris (Newburyport, MA/ Newburyport HS) and (senior) Chris Contre (East Bridgewater, MA/East Bridgewater HS) will all start, and we also have (senior) Kyle Merrill (Dennis, MA/Dennis-Yarmouth HS) in relief."

The Corsairs will be counting on their returning veterans. "Talis, Ryan and Worden will bat three, four and five for us and they will have to come through," said Curran. "Defensively, we have to be clean, because the game won't be as offense-oriented with the new bats. Balls won't carry as far, and we can't give outs away."

The conference race will be very competitive. "UMass Boston is as good as anyone, and Eastern Connecticut, Southern Maine and Keene State are all loaded," said Curran. "RIC will be good, and Western Connecticut has a pitcher who can beat anyone. It should be a good year."