The Binghamton baseball team continued America East (AE) play with a road trip to NJIT over the weekend. The Bearcats were unable to get a win in a series-opening doubleheader on Friday, but for the second straight week, BU won the final game of the series and exited the weekend 1-2 against the Highlanders.

“[Sunday] was about as good as we could play,” said Binghamton head coach Tim Sinicki. “We got a good start from [junior pitcher Gabe Driscoll] and played clean defensively. Unfortunately, we had a chance to win on Friday, and I normally don’t go down this road, but there were two calls, one in each ball game, that went against us, and I thought they were the wrong calls and actually, both of them led to the winning run in each game … So, a little disappointed but proud of our guys the way we came back and played today after sitting around in a hotel all day yesterday.”

Game one of Friday’s doubleheader proved to be the lowest-scoring of the weekend. The game’s only run came in the bottom of the sole extra inning, only after both pitchers had gone back and forth to keep the game scoreless. Senior pitcher Thomas Babalis got the start on the mound and lowered his ERA to 3.67, good enough for second in the conference. However, the Bearcats (20-14, 7-5 AE) were held scoreless in the end. NJIT’s (16-21, 6-6 AE) run-scoring single in the bottom of the eighth secured its opening victory.

“[Babalis] was spectacular,” Sinicki said. “He was in complete control the entire outing. He kind of set the tone for us, we pitched really well this weekend. But you want your ace pitching the first game of the series to set the tone, and he was terrific — as good as I’ve seen him.”

The doubleheader continued, as both teams began to pick it up offensively. Immediately, the opening inning showed signs of this game being more eventful, as Binghamton struck first. Senior outfielder Cavan Tully was sent home by sophomore catcher Evin Sullivan’s RBI sacrifice fly to lead 1-0. NJIT responded from there though, getting two runs in its half of the first while holding the Bearcats to just two hits through six innings.

By the seventh, the Highlanders had a 3-1 cushion. BU made a game out of it, however, as junior outfielder Mike Gunning drove Tully in with a double, quickly followed by another RBI from Sullivan that brought Gunning home to level the score. The winning run was plated by NJIT in the end, as the hosts would walk off for the second game in a row for a 4-3 win.

Game three was forced to Sunday due to a rain delay, as the Bearcats entered looking to secure a consolation win, already having dropped the series overall. Binghamton was on its way to doing so after a two-run first inning — kicked off by an RBI triple from sophomore second baseman Nick Roselli which allowed junior outfielder Tommy Reifler to score. Roselli remained on base and eventually scored himself courtesy of a senior first baseman Kevin Gsell sacrifice fly. It would remain locked at 2-2 until the visitors displayed their best inning of the series so far, scoring four runs in the top of the fourth. The 7-2 win was secured by another Roselli RBI to send Reifler home in the top of the seventh.

“The last thing you want is to be swept and so the fact that we’ve been able to win — these last two weekends — the final game of the series, speaks to the level of character our guys have, but we certainly don’t want to make a habit of this,” Sinicki said. “We want to try and do a better job in the first two games. One thing about these past two weekends is that all of these losses have been by one run, and we have to try [to] score runs when we have opportunities to, and maybe get a lead and extend it.”

BU will return home for a midweek game against Siena on Tuesday, April 25. First pitch is scheduled for 7 p.m. at the Bearcats Baseball Complex in Vestal, New York.