Baseball Splits With Lehigh Again
April 10, 2011
EASTON, Pa. - For the second consecutive day, the Lafayette baseball team used the momentum from a game one rally falling short to take an early lead and win game two against rival Lehigh. The Leopards and Mountain Hawks split the Sunday twinbill and the season series.
With the split, the Leopards move to 11-17 overall and 5-3 in Patriot League play. Lehigh now stands at 18-14 on the season with a 3-5 league tally.
Senior first baseman Matt Fenster drove in four runs - including a two-run home run - and senior catcher A.J. Miller continued his torrid pace with a home run, a double and two RBI. Senior right fielder Alex Bechta and sophomore designated hitter Andrew Ruck also drove in runs for the Leopards.
The Mountain Hawks jumped out to a 6-0 lead entering the bottom of the fourth inning, when Miller drew a two-out walk which was followed by Fenster's roundtripper. The first home run of the season for the 2010 First Team All-Patriot player pulled the Leopards within striking distance at 6-2.
Lafayette made a final push in the bottom of the sixth inning, as junior shortstop Brian Davila and Bechta each singled to lead off the inning. Mountain Hawks' hurler Dan Ciccone quelled the threat however, as the 6-2 lead held up. Lehigh added three runs in the top of the seventh inning to bring the score to its eventual final of 9-2.
Brandon Sady got the win for Lehigh. Sady (1-1) allowed two runs on five hits over the first five innings, striking out five Leopards and walking just one.
Starting on the mound for Lafayette was junior right-hander John Gentile. Gentile (1-5) allowed eight hits and six runs (four earned) over the first 3.1 innings of action to take the loss. He struck out two batters and walked three. Sophomore southpaw Joe Leo finished out the final 3.2 frames, allowing three earned runs on five hits. Leo had a pair of strikeouts and issued one walk.
Just as they did yesterday, the Leopards came out swinging in the nightcap. A Miller RBI double, a two-run double from Fenster and a Ruck RBI single gave Lafayette a fast 4-0 lead and chased Lehigh starter Taylor Warncke from the game after recording just one out.
Lafayette would add to its lead in the bottom of the second inning. Davila doubled with one out to start the action then took third on a Bechta groundout. Lehigh hurler Thomas O'Malley attempted to intentionally walk Miller, but sailed a pitch over the catcher's head as Davila came home to score. With the bases now cleared, O'Malley opted to pitch to Miller, who deposited the ball over the 368' sign in right field for his ninth home run of the season.
In total, the Leopards led 6-0 before the Mountain Hawks managed their first hit of off freshman left-hander Connor Ortolf. Though Lehigh would get across in the fourth inning, Lafayette took it back immediately in the with bottom of the frame as freshman left fielder Andrew Santomauro scored on a wild pitch to give Lafayette a 7-1 advantage.
Lehigh pushed another pair of runs across in the fifth inning to climb within four runs at 7-3, but a Bechta RBI single added an insurance run in the bottom of the eighth inning. Junior right-hander Jeff Snell recorded the last six outs in a non-save situation to close out an 8-3 Lafayette win.
Ortolf (2-1) scattered six hits and three earned runs over the first six innings of work. He struck out two batters and walked two. Chris Boyce, Jack Rems, Kevin Casey and Snell combined to toss three scoreless frames of relief.
The Leopards return to action on Wednesday for a 3:30 p.m. contest with Villanova. Lafayette is in the midst of a 14-game homestand at Kamine Stadium.
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