Feb. 25, 2012
The Siena baseball team picked up its first win of the season in the backend of a doubleheader with previously unbeaten Liberty Saturday afternoon in Lynchburgh. The Saints lost the first game 1-0, but rebounded to win the nightcap 9-7.
Siena's (1-6) Ryan Poplawski locked horns with Liberty's (7-1) Patrick Eckelbarger in the first game, and the Flames used back-to-back doubles in the fourth inning to account for the game's only run.
It spoiled the top pitching effort of the season for Siena, as Poplawski went the distance, allowing just the one run, and five hits. He struck out four and walked just one in his six innings of work.
As good as Poplawski was, Eckelbarger was a tad better. He went all seven innings and allowed just three hits while striking out six. The Saints got a runner as far as third base in the third, fourth and seventh innings, but couldn't cash in.
Justin Sizemore and Tyler Cox combined for the back-to-back doubles in the Liberty fourth.
In the second game, Siena's bats came alive. Vincent Citro, Kyle Baldani and Mike Fish each had two hits for the Saints, and eight of nine players hit safely.
Freshman Matt Quintana pitched 3.1 innings of relief, allowing just one earned run to pick up the win. Neil Fryer got the save, getting the final two outs of the game in the seventh on a double play groundout.
Citro, Baldani and John Ronney - the top three hitters in Siena's order - scored seven of the team's nine runs.
The Saints scored four times in the second after Liberty struck for three in the bottom of the first. The Flames rallied to tie the game at 5-5 in the bottom of the third, but the Saints took the lead for good with a run in the fourth, and held Liberty off with a run in the sixth and two in the seventh.
Fish delivered the big hit in the seventh after the Saints scored a run on a wild pitch.
The doubleheader was played under frigid conditions with high winds.
The two teams complete the four-game set Sunday at 1 p.m.