BOSTON - A.J. Johnson tossed the George Mason baseball team's first
complete game in nearly three years as the Patriots cruised to a 7-1 Colonial
Athletic Association victory over Northeastern on Sunday afternoon at Friedman
Diamond. The win in the rubber game gave Mason its fifth series win of the
season, as the Patriots improved to 25-12 and 11-7 in CAA play. Northeastern
dropped to 14-17 and 4-11 in conference following the loss.
Johnson (5-4) needed just 93 pitches and exactly two hours
to shut down the Huskies, who combined for seven hits and just one ninth-inning
run while Johnson fanned seven NU batters, allowing just one walk. It was his
fourth straight win in as many starts. Matt Cook (1-4) took the loss after
allowing the first five runs in a four-inning start.
The complete game was Mason's first since April 25, 2009,
when Mike Modica lasted all nine innings in a 10-3 win over Hofstra.
Mason pounded out 12 hits on the day, including a 3-for-4,
two-RBI performance by Nick Allen in the leadoff spot. Zack Helgeson was
2-for-4 on Sunday, including his league-leading 10th home run of the
season, while Blaise Fernandez also finished 2-for-4. Matt Miller led the Husky
offense going 2-for-3 at the plate.
It was Helgeson who got the Mason offense going, leading off
the second inning with a single and coming home to score on Mick Foley's groundout
to shortstop, the second out of the inning. Mason added three runs in the fourth
inning, after Fernandez, Foley and Jake Leonardo all reached. Chris Cook
grounded to first with the bases loaded, scoring Fernandez, and Allen cleared
the bases with his double to left center field.
An RBI single by Fernandez in the fifth made the score 5-0,
and Mason added another run in the eighth inning as Cook scored from third on a
throwing error by Oliver Hart.
The final blow came in the ninth inning, as Helgeson led off
the frame with a solo shot that cleared the Mason bullpen beyond the
left-center field fence. In the bottom half of the ninth, Miller led off with a
double to left and came home to score on Tucker Roeder's sacrifice fly to
center field, the only scoring of the day for the Huskies.
Mason will next take on George Washington on Tuesday
afternoon. First pitch from Barcroft Park is scheduled for 3:30 p.m.