Baseball Edges Navy to Split Doubleheader
April 12, 2014
EASTON, Pa. - Lafayette came out on the positive end of a 5-4 affair in game two of Saturday's doubleheader against Navy to earn a split of the twinbill at Kamine Stadium. The Midshipmen claimed game one by a 6-0 final.
Trailing 2-0 heading into the bottom of the sixth, Lafayette put up four spot to take the lead. Navy quickly tied the game in the seventh, but it was the Leopards who reclaimed the lead with on a sacrifice fly in their next trip to the plate. Sophomore Connor McMahon pitched the final two innings and kept Navy off the board to secure Lafayette's victory. With the result, Lafayette improved to 9-17 on the year and 2-6 in Patriot League play, while Navy fell to 17-20 overall and 3-7 in the conference.
Each team only registered two base hits through the opening three innings as Lafayette starter Mitch Leeds and Navy's Stephen Moore were in cruise control to start the game.
A leadoff double into the gap in left center off the bat of David Norman began the fourth inning and gave Navy its first runner in scoring position. The Mids were unable to advance Norman any further, though, as Leeds got Andrew Hayes to fly out to right and punched out the next two hitters to end the inning.
Moore continued to pitch well for the visitors in the fourth and sent the Pards down in order for the second consecutive inning.
With two outs in the top of the fifth, Navy put together a rally and broke the ice with two runs in the inning. Robert Currie got to first with a single up the middle off the glove of shortstop Andrew Landolfi and promptly stole second base. A base hit by Travis Blue into center field allowed Currie to motor around from second, before Kash Manzelli roped a double to the wall in center field to make it 2-0. Leeds' sixth strikeout of the game finished off Navy in the fifth.
Moore retired 10 straight Lafayette batters with a clean inning in the Leopards' next trip to the dish, including the final out via a bare hand grab by Manzelli on a bouncing ball to first base hit by Ronald Sessa.
After Leeds worked out of a two-on, two-out jam to keep it a two-run game, Andrew Landolfi started the bottom of the sixth with a hard-hit single to center field. Lanfolfi swiped second base and took third on a fly ball to center field by Michael Coniglio. Andrew Santomauro cut Navy's lead in half by legging out a double to left field, chasing home Landolfi. A comebacker from Kramer was snared by Moore for the second out, before Alex Woinski served an RBI single into center field that tied the game at 2-2. The rally continued when Tim Lazor ripped a double down the line in right that brought around Woinski from first and put Lafayette ahead. Moore then hit Tyler Hudson with a pitch and was replaced by Tyler Ridgeway out of the Navy bullpen after throwing 5 2/3 innings. Moore earned a no-decision after allowing four runs, three earned, on six hits and struck out two.
Ridgeway got the result he needed when Parker Hills hit a groundball to third base, but it was thrown wide of first, allowing Lazor to come around and score. Hudson also attemped to score or the miscue, but was thrown out at the plate 9-3-2. Lafayette led 4-2 after six complete innings.
Navy wasted no time in responding with a two-run inning to tie the score at 4-4 in the top of the seventh. Currie was hit by a pitch to start the frame and Blue followed with a run-scoring triple to the wall in left center. Leeds intentionally walked Manzelli before exiting the game with runners on the corners and nobody out. Alex Farina's first pitch was a wild one, and both baserunners moved up and the score was tied at 4-4. Farina earned the next two outs with a pair of ground balls before McMahon came on to strike out Brandon Beans and strand Manzelli 90 feet from home.
A one out single inside the third base bag by Landolfi gave the Leopards a chance to answer in the bottom of the seventh. Landolfi stole second and took third on a throwing error by the Navy catcher. Pinch hitter Zach Gross drew a four-pitch walk to bring up Santomauro with first and third base occupied and one out. A fly ball to right field was deep enough to score Landolfi from third on the sacrifice fly as Lafayette regained the lead at 5-4.
McMahon gave up two hits over the final two innings to secure his first victory of the season and also fanned three in the process. Leeds earned a no-decision in six innings on the mound. The sophomore allowed four runs, three earned, on nine hits and walked one.
Lafayette and Navy continue the series on Sunday afternoon at Kamine Stadium. First pitch is slated for noon and the games can be seen live on the Patriot League Network.