Baseball closes out its season with loss to Sacred Heart
The Big Green left it all out on the field for a tough loss against Sacred Heart.
The Big Green fell to Sacred Heart University in its final two games, finishing the season with the program’s largest losing streak ever and an overall 3-38 record.
On Saturday, May 13, Dartmouth traveled to Bridgepoint, Connecticut to face off against the Pioneers of Sacred Heart at Veterans Park. The Big Green was not able to extend its winning streak after winning one game each against Brown University and Cornell University respectively in the two weeks prior. The Pioneers swept the doubleheader, winning 25-6 the first game and 6-5 the next.
Ryan Schwartz ’23 said he wanted to make the most of the competition, as it signaled the end of his time as a collegiate student athlete.
“I was focused on trying to make the most of the final games of my baseball career,” Schwartz said. “Baseball has meant so much to me, it's something I have played my whole life, and I learned a lot from baseball.”
Co-captain Kolton Freeman ’23 said he wanted seniors to feel appreciated during their last game.
“I was mostly concerned with having as much fun as possible with my friends since we are never going to play baseball again with each other,” Freeman said. “These are my closest friends, and I just want to make it special for them one last time.”
The Big Green athletes struck first in the match with Tyler Cox ’24 scoring in the first inning. Jackson Hower ’25 took advantage of the Pioneers’ errors and scored in the second inning. Freeman tried to add more to the scoreboard as he slapped a double to leftfield and stole third, but he was ultimately left on base.
The Pioneers’ bats started off swinging as they scored two runs in the first inning, 14 in the second, and five in the third, giving them a 21-2 lead.
“We support each other through failures and successes,” Schwartz said. “Things happened, but we were still up in the dugout trying to support one another.”
Dartmouth shifted momentum as Max Zajec ’24 scored in the sixth inning. Zajec also singled in the seventh inning to bring Peter O’Toole ’23 home.
The last Big Green run was memorable for the seniors, as James House ’23 hit his first home run of the season on his final day playing baseball for Dartmouth. This would not be enough though, as Dartmouth lost the game 26-5.
Co-captain Trystan Sarcone ’22 started off the second game pitching five scoreless innings. During that period, the Pioneers struggled as Sarcone did not let a base runner pass second base.
The Big Green batters were alive with Zackarie Casebonne ’25 batting in Hower, who singled to secure a 1-0 Big Green lead. Casebonne ended the season with a six-game hitting streak.
O’Toole had an unforgettable last day of playing Dartmouth baseball, hitting his first career home run, a solo shot to center field to bring the Big Green up 2-0.
O’Toole was not the only senior that hit his first career home run that game. Schwartz slammed a two-run homer in the fourth inning to make it 4-0 Dartmouth.
“It was a 2-0 pitch, and I just hit it as hard as I possibly could,” Schwartz said. “It was a pitch that I did not want to miss since it was my last game. Everyone was super ecstatic that Pete, myself and James all hit home runs in our final couple of games.”
Some younger members of the team said they were thrilled to see the seniors excel.
“It was a very special moment for them and the entire team to see them succeed in that way,” pitcher Danny Will ’25 said.
The Pioneers did not allow Dartmouth to hold onto their lead for long, as they scored a total of six runs that inning, with the Big Green making three fielding errors.
Zajec started off the eighth with a single to center, and Hower brought him home as he doubled down the leftfield line. Sacred Heart cut the rally short, getting the next three Big Green batters out.
Tyler Robinson ’24 beat out the throw to first base to get an infield single in the ninth, but Cox grounded it into a double play to end the season for the Big Green. The final score was 6-5.
With the season over, Schwartz reflected on his time with head coach Bob Whalen.
“Coach Whalen has taught us a lot with respect to baseball,” Schwartz said. “He also talks about discipline, camaraderie, being the best person and teammates [and] always prioritizing our family and academics.”
Looking ahead, the team will gather for a few events to celebrate the end of the season and will mentally prepare for the next season.
“I know that I need to have a bigger role,” Will said. “There are only three lefties on the team, and I am going to have to step up as a primary reliever or maybe even a starter.
Even though most of the Class of 2023 will be moving on, Freeman, who reclassed, has high hopes for next season.
“There are some solid guys in [the Class of 2027],” Freeman said. “They remind me a lot of the 23s that are graduating.”
Dartmouth baseball will be back at Red Rolfe field in 2024.