April 29, 2009
Siena (11-32) scored two runs in the bottom of the ninth to rally past Rhode Island (30-14) - one of the top baseball programs in the Northeast this season - 7-6 at Siena Field Wednesday. Eric Mruczek legged out a potential double play ball which would have sent the game to extra innings with one out and runners on the corners as Dan Paolini scored the game-winning run.
Paolini finished the game 4-for-4, raising his batting average to .402 with seven games remaining. He could become just the third Siena player to hit over .400 in a season since the Saints joined the MAAC in 1990 (Paul Wilders in 1995 and Josh Kean in 2002).
Anthony Giansanti homered twice and drove in four runs. His 11 home runs tie for the sixth most in a season in program history.
Rhode Island, which entered the game 30-13 and leads the Atlantic 10 with a 15-2 conference record, was led by Dan Rhault who had three hits, two RBI and two runs scored.
The Saints scored the tying and winning runs off one of the nation's top closers, Luke Demko, who entered the game with 10 saves.
Siena led 1-0 after Eric Mruczek's RBI single in the first and ace Will Hassett held the Rams scoreless until the fifth. Rhode Island broke through for four runs in the frame, each coming after Hassett induced a potential inning ending double play that was mishandled.
Matt Moberg relieved Hassett and delivered his top effort of the season to pick up the win. The lone blemish was a two-run home run by Jeff Cammans in the seventh inning that gave Rhode Island a 6-3 lead. Giansanti blasted a two-run shot in the bottom of the seventh to pull the Saints within a run and after Moberg held the Rams scoreless in the eighth and ninth Siena rallied for the dramatic win.
, who finished with two hits, started the ninth inning rally with a sharp single to right. He advanced to third on Paolini's hit and run single through the left side of the infield and scored on a solid single by Kevin Quaranto
that sent Paolini to third and set up the final sequence.
Siena returns to action Thursday at Vermont.