The varsity baseball team will rely on ace pitcher Andy Ward and a strong attack today to try to stop a Boston University nine which was picked in a preseason poll to be the top team in New England. The game will be played at Soldiers Field at 3:45.
Led by two-time All-New England catcher Tom Gatchall, and last year's batting leader Joe Stoico, the Terriers will be opening the defense of their Greater Boston Baseball League title.
Downed Crimson Twice Last Year
B.U., which slaughtered Suffolk University in its opener, 11-2, last year reached the finals of the N.C.A.A. regional play-offs. In the course of its successful campaign it beat the Crimson twice, by 2-1 and 3-1 scores.
Opposing Ward on the mound will be Jack Johnston, who led the Terrier staff two years ago. He set the team down in order in a one inning relief stint against Suffolk.
Ward pitched against Richmond and George Washington in the spring trip, allowing two earned runs in 8 2/3 innings, but registered no decisions. A right-hander who depends upon a blazing fast ball and a sharp-breaking curve, he compiled a 3.11 earned run average last year, finishing with a 2-3 won-lost record.
Coach Norm Sheppard plans to use the same starting lineup which has won three out of four games played, a record which indicates that this team should improve upon last year's 7-15 showing. Tuesday the Crimson captured its first regular game, shutting out M.I.T., 6 to 0.
In the four games to date, the varsity has already demonstrated more power than it was able to muster all last season; the three home runs the team belted in the southern trip were three more than last year's nine hit.
Sophomores John Simourian and Matt Botsford, the first baseman and right fielder respectively, have been the most active at bat, each collecting seven hits.