Ortolf and Offense Lead Lafayette Past Bison
April 27, 2013
LEWISBURG, Pa. - Connor Ortolf pitched seven solid innings and each Lafayette starter registered a base hit in a 4-3 victory over Bucknell in game two of Saturday's doubleheader at Depuw Field. Bucknell took game one by a 4-0 final.
The Leopards offense generated 12 hits in all and Kevin Casey tossed two scoreless innings in relief to secure the victory. Andrew Ruck, Zach Gross and Brad Hopek each had two hits to pace the offensive effort.
Bucknell got on the board quickly in the bottom of the first inning when Corey Furman singled to start the rally and Travis Clark followed up with an RBI triple to the gap in right-center field. An groundout scored Clark and Bucknell held a 2-0 lead after one.
It didn't take long for the Leopards to claw back into the game and for starter Connor Ortolf to settle down. Consecutive singles by Matt Lawrence and Hopek set up an RBI situation for shortstop Jackson Kramer. He delivered with a groundball to the pitcher that scored Lawrence to cut the lead in half, prior to Parker Hills' third inning double that tied the score at 2-2.
Ortolf allowed only two hits over the next three innings and the score remained the same as the two sides entered the fifth. James McCool started the frame with an infield single off Bucknell lefty Dan Weigel before Ruck gave himself up with a sacrifice bunt to move McCool to second. A Gross single placed runners at the corners for Hills, who connected on a sac-fly to give the Leopards a 3-2 advantage.
The Bison came back with a run of their own in the bottom half of the fifth when Carter Bumgardner ripped a two-out single back through the middle. The run turned out to be Bucknell's last of the nine-inning game two, as Ortolf completed his final two innings with six straight outs before handing the ball to Casey for the final two frames. Ortolf earned the win and gave up three runs on six hits, while walking one and striking out four.
The decisive run for Lafayette came in the top of the seventh to put Ortolf in line for the win. Andrew Santomauro led off the inning with a single and McCool bunted him to second base. Ruck's infield single to second allowed Santomauro to move to third with one away. Gross came to the plate with a chance to give Lafayette the lead and answered the challenge with an infield single of his own, chasing home Santomauro and Lafayette led 4-3.
Casey gave up a one-out double in the eighth, but a lineout to second and a strikeout ended the threat before a perfect ninth allowed the senior to nail down his first save of the season.
Lafayette and Bucknell resume the series tomorrow afternoon with another doubleheader. First pitch is set for 12 p.m. with Mitch Leeds taking the ball for Lafayette against Bucknell's Dan Goldstein.