May 12, 2013
The Siena baseball team is headed back to the MAAC Tournament. The Saints completed an impressive weekend sweep of Saint Peter's, drilling the Peacocks 7-4 and 8-2 Sunday, and with Fairfield's Sunday sweep of Manhattan, the team now knows it will head back to the Garden State for the MAAC Championships.
The Saints remained in a third place tie with Canisius, five games clear of Manhattan and Fairfield with just three league contests left on the schedule. That means the Saints and Griffs will join Rider and Marist, which clinched Tournament bids last weekend, in the four-team Championships May 23-25 at Trenton's Arm & Hammer Park.
Sophomore Matt Gage put the exclamation point on the weekend with a complete game gem in the final game of the series. Gage struck out 16 batters, and allowed just three hits. Chris Grimes' sixth inning home run accounted for the Peacocks' only two runs, but by that time Siena was comfortably ahead.
Vincent Citro had three hits in each game from the leadoff spot for Siena. Brain Fay had five hits on the day, and Mike Fish completed a monster weekend with four hits on the afternoon, including his third home run of the series.
Justin Brantley pitched into the sixth to earn the win in game one for Siena. The Saints led 5-0 before Saint Peter's got on the board in the fourth. Matt Quintana picked up the save, retiring all four batters he faced.
Fay's two-run homer highlighted Siena's four-run third, and after the Peacocks made it 5-1, Mike Allen doubled home a run and Kyle Baldani's groundout scored a second to push the lead back to six runs.
The Saints scored twice in the first in the second game on Fay's infield single, and Fish led off the third with a tremendous blast into the wind to give Gage all the support he would need.
Fish saw his average jump to .371 with an 8-for-16 showing in the three games this weekend. He leads the MAAC with 11 home runs, and enters the final series of the season a legitimate Player of the Year candidate.
Freshman Tyler Martis went 3-for-4 in the series finale, finishing off an 8-for-12 weekend at the plate. Martis also anchored a Siena defense that made just one error in 112 chances (.991) this weekend, playing a flawless shortstop.
Siena hosts two-time defending MAAC Champion and Preseason favorite Manhattan Thursday and Friday in a series that will have far less drama than it looked like it would before this weekend.
The Saints haven't won the MAAC Championship since 1999, but they reached the Championship game in Trenton in 2008 and 2011.