Sophomore John Rooney raised his team-leading average to .314 with three hits Sunday
April 15, 2012
Nick McQuali's bases loaded RBI single in the 13th capped off a wild weekend of baseball in Poughkeepsie, as Marist salvaged the third game of an incredibly tight series with its archrival 8-7 Sunday afternoon.
All three games were decided by a single run, and all three were won in the victor's final at bat. Siena (11-24/4-5) won 1-0 in 11 innings in game one Saturday, and scored twice in the seventh for a 4-3 win game two.
Marist (11-19/5-6) fought off the sweep by answering a Siena run in the top of the 12th with Pat Welsh's RBI double with two outs off Siena star reliever Neil Fryer, but the Saints stayed alive an inning longer by cutting down the potential winning run at the plate.
Siena starter Justin Brantley worked six innings, and allowed four runs, but just one was earned. He left with the Saints trailing 4-1, before Siena tied the game with three runs in the seventh on an infield single, and two hit batters with the bases loaded.
The Saints took the lead with two runs in the top of the eighth on an RBI single by Larry Balkwill, and a sacrifice fly off the bat of Dan Sullivan. Then it was Marist's turn to play catchup, and the Red Foxes this time took advantage of a hit batter with the bases loaded, and then a fielder's choice RBI groundout to tie the game at 7-7.
That's where the scorer remained until the 12th when Tyler Bell and Rooney began the frame with singles for Siena, and Bell scored on Ken Kirshner's ensuing sac fly.
In the bottom of the 12th, Fryer relieved freshman Ed Lewicki, making his third appearance of the weekend, and had a chance to pick up his second straight save, before Welsh's clutch double to left with two outs and men on first and second. The Red Foxes scored the winner in the 13th off infielder-turned-pitcher Andrew Sawyer as the front end of the Saints' pen had been fully utilized.
The Saints travel to face Cornell Tuesday in a doubleheader, host Fairleigh Dickinson Wednesday and then Saint Peter's in a huge three-game MAAC set next weekend.