Ninth-Inning Rally Lifts Diplomats

Ninth-Inning Rally Lifts Diplomats

HAMPDEN-SYDNEY, Va. - Franklin & Marshall put together a three-run rally with two outs in the bottom of the ninth inning to edge Rutgers-Camden, 5-4, in non-conference baseball action at the Hampden-Sydney Tournament on Saturday afternoon. The Diplomats open their season at 1-0 with the victory, while the Scarlet Raptors drop to 0-2.

Trailing 4-2 heading into the bottom of the ninth, the Diplomats came through with clutch hitting when it mattered most and took advantage of several fielding mistakes by the Scarlet Raptors. After allowing just two hits in eight innings on the mound, Rutgers-Camden pulled starter Tommy Potts to open the ninth, placing reliever Tristan Keyser on the rubber.

Keyser started strong with a pair of strikeouts to put Rutgers-Camden just one out shy of the victory, but the Diplomats battled back with a vengeance. Connor Devlin kept things alive with a single, Patrick Andrews followed with a walk and Blue Wells delivered a key pinch-hit single to load the bases.

With Alex Vescera at the plate, Mike Giannone, who entered as a pinch runner for Devlin, touched home plate on passed ball to bring F&M within one, 4-3. Vescera then reached first on an error by the Scarlet Raptors third baseman, allowing pinch runner Tyler Veterano to score from third and even the count at 4-4.

Another error - this time at second base - doomed Rutgers-Camden and clinched the win for F&M. A ball of the bat of Aaron Gillette was misplayed at second base and Sam Gladstone, who also entered as a pinch runner, scored the game-winning run in walk-off fashion.

Gillette, Vescera and Brian Erb each notched RBIs on the day for F&M, while Devlin, Andrews, Wells and J.T. Triantos tallied one hit apiece.

Jon Siswo paced the Scarlet Raptors with a 3-for-3 line and one RBI, while Jon Hydock went 2-for-5 with one run scored.

Alex Guerra (1-0) earned the win on the mound for F&M. Guerra relieved starter Matt Valente after the fourth inning and closed out the game with four strikeouts while allowing four hits and one run. Potts struck out 13 in eight innings of work, while Keyser (0-1) takes the loss for Rutgers-Camden.

Franklin & Marshall 5, Rutgers-Camden 4 (Feb 25, 2012 at Hampden-Sydney, VA)
Rutgers-Camden...... 300 000 100  -  4  8  2      (0-2)
Franklin & Marshall. 000 020 003  -  5  4  2      (1-0)
Pitchers: Rutgers-Camden - Tommy Potts; Tristan Keyser(9) and Shaune Collins.
Franklin & Marshall - Matt Valente; Alex Guerra(5) and Patrick Andrews; Tyler Veterano.

Win-Alex Guerra(1-0)

Loss-Tristan Keyser(0-1)