NORTHBOROUGH, Mass. -- The UConn baseball team erased three leads, including a 6-1 deficit, in an 8-7 victory over Boston College on Tuesday afternoon at the New England Baseball Complex. The win improves the Huskies to 18-9 on the year and signifies the 400th career victory for 12th-year head coach Jim Penders.
The Huskies rallied from a five-run deficit to tie the contest in the sixth, before the teams traded runs in the seventh and UConn finally went ahead in the eighth. Nico Darras (Laguna Beach, Calif.) tossed two scoreless innings in relief to pick up the win, striking out a pair.
Vinny Siena (Woodbridge, Conn.) homered in the first and drove in the go-ahead run in the eighth as part of a 2-for-5 day. Bobby Melley (Barnstable, Mass.) went 2-for-4 with a double and Willy Yahn (Sharon, Conn.) also notched a pair of hits and doubled. Jon Testani (Monroe, Conn.) and Yahn each drove in a pair and Joe DeRoche-Duffin (Santa Ana, Calif.) hit a home run in the victory.
UConn gave the ball to Andrew Zapata (Staten Island, N.Y.) for his fourth start of the year and the sophomore lasted 4.1 innings, allowing four runs and striking out five. He was opposed by Nick Poore who tossed five two-run innings, striking out nine against two walks.
After BC took the lead with an RBI double from Chris Shaw in the top of the first, Siena evened the score at 1-1 with a solo home run to center field. The Eagles re-took the lead with a pair of runs in the third, and pushed their advantage to 6-1 with a three-run home run in the fifth.
DeRoche-Duffin cut the lead back to four with the solo home run in the bottom of the fifth, before the Huskies struck for four runs with two outs in the sixth. Yahn made it 6-4 with a two-run single, before Testani tied it up with a two-run double to the left-center field gap that tied the contest.
The Eagles went ahead once again with a run in the seventh, before Blake Davey (Newport Beach, Calif.) punched an RBI single through the left side to level the contest. Darras came on for the eighth and faced a two-on, one-out jam, but struck out Michael Stream and Shaw to end the threat and keep it tied.
Yahn led off the bottom of the eighth with a double, and Siena singled him home on a two-out blooper to center field. Darras remained on for the ninth and sealed the win with a scoreless frame.
Up next, the Huskies continue American Athletic Conference play when they host the Bulls of South Florida for a three-game set in Storrs. Game one on Thursday, April 2 is set for 3 p.m.
UConn is now 64-53 all-time against Boston College, winning its first game against the Eagles since 2010
Jim Penders joins his former coach, Andy Baylock, as the only two UConn head coaches to record 400 career wins
Vinny Siena extended his hitting streak to 18 games with a first-inning home run
Bobby Melley has reached base safely in 20 consecutive games
Since returning from an injury that kept him out four games, Joe DeRoche-Duffin has homered in back-to-back contests