HOOKSETT — He may not be a voracious reader or an avid movie-goer, but Trevor Anibal does love a good ending.
When a Southern New Hampshire University baseball game ends with Anibal on the mound, it’s usually good news for the Penmen. Although he was a starting pitcher when he played for Bedford High School, Anibal has become SNHU’s de facto closer.
He didn’t pitch in SNHU’s 10-5 victory over Saint Anselm on Wednesday, but Anibal earned a save in two of SNHU’s four games last weekend. He struck out five of the six batters he faced and didn’t allow a run in Friday’s 4-3 triumph over Stonehill, and tossed 2 2/3 scoreless innings with three strikeouts when SNHU beat Stonehill 7-5 on Sunday.
“I’m happy to play anywhere I can, so I don’t complain about coming out of the (bullpen),” Anibal said. “It’s something I like doing.
“It’s a little bit different physically, getting ready faster, but that’s something I’ve learned how to do. Mentally it’s the same job. You’re still pitching, but obviously it can be in bigger situations with guys on base, so you have to lock in a little more. At the end of the day it’s still pitching.”
Anibal, a sophomore, has appeared in seven games this season, all in relief, and leads the team with a 0.51 ERA and a 0.62 WHIP. He has a 2-0 record, two saves and 30 strikeouts in 17 2/3 innings. Opponents are batting .145 against him.
Anibal’s best performance of the season came in a 4-2 victory against Adelphi, when he pitched 5 2/3 innings of scoreless relief. He allowed two hits, walked one and struck out eight.
“I thought Trevor would be a good relief guy for us — and I think he could start here, too — because he’s got a really short, quick arm, so his fastball jumps on guys,” SNHU coach Scott Loiseau said. “And he has a really good curve he can throw for strikes, so he can get righties and lefties out. First time through a lineup he’s really tough … and he’s extremely tough mentally.”
Last season, Anibal’s eight appearances all came in relief. He finished the season with a 2-0 record, one save and a 0.79 ERA. He allowed four hits and struck out 12 in 11 1/3 innings, but walked eight. Loiseau said Anibal is commanding his fastball better this season.
“That was something I really wanted to work on this year, was limiting those walks,” Anibal said. “That was my focus this offseason. That’s what I worked on in the fall. So far I feel like I’m doing a pretty good job of limiting those walks.”
Since his senior season was lost to COVID, Anibal’s final high school performance was Bedford’s 1-0 loss to Londonderry in the 2019 Division I championship game. He struck out seven and limited Londonderry to three hits in six innings. It was perhaps the only complete game Anibal pitched for Bedford that didn’t end well for the Bulldogs.
“He’s the perfect guy to have back there,” Loiseau said. “He’s a legitimate weapon for us.”
Derry’s George Welch made his second start and fifth appearance of the season on the mound for the Penmen (15-4) on Wednesday. Welch, a Pinkerton Academy graduate who transferred to SNHU from St. Joseph’s (Maine), entered the game with a 2-0 record and a 3.97 ERA. He allowed two runs in 3 1/3 innings before being relieved by Concord’s Griffin Gilbert, a transfer from Fairleigh Dickinson. Gilbert collected the win by tossing 1 2/3 scoreless innings. He didn’t allow a hit or walk, but did hit one batter. … Brentwood’s Nolan Elmore had a two-run double in the fourth inning for the Hawks (8-14). It was one of three hits he had in the game. …
Goffstown’s Dakota Mulcay hit the 29th home run of his college career in the fifth inning. He holds the SNHU record for career home runs. Mulcay, who was used as a designated hitter, also had a two-run double in the sixth. … Saint Anselm second baseman Brady Doran hit a three-run homer in the top of the ninth.