F&M Defeats Vassar in See-Saw Battle

F&M Defeats Vassar in See-Saw Battle

WINTER HAVEN, Fla. - For the second time this week, the Franklin & Marshall baseball team  rallied back from an early deficit to secure a victory as the Diplomats edged Vassar, 8-7, in spring break baseball action on Thursday. The Diplomats move to 6-5 with the win, while the Brewers remain winless at 0-5.

Vassar came out of the gates strong with one run in the top of the first and four scores in the second to take a 5-0 advantage. The Diplomats immediately bounced back with three runs in the bottom of the second and two more in the third to even things up at 5-5.

F&M took its first lead of the contest in the fifth. J.T. Triantos led off the frame with a bunt single down the third base line, before stealing both second and third to put the go-ahead run 90 feet from home plate. Kevin Shields then knocked in Triantos with a sacrifice fly to deep left field that gave the Diplomats a 6-5 edge.

The Diplomats initial lead wouldn't last long, however, as the Brewers plated two in the top of the sixth, including a solo shot by Brett Zaziski to right field, to jump back on top, 7-6.

With two outs and nobody on in the bottom of the sixth, Vassar starter John MacGregor registered what appeared to be the final out of the frame with a strikeout, but his pitch bounced past the catcher's mitt. Patrick Andrews hustled down the base path to reach first safely on the wild pitch and give F&M new life in the inning. With Alex Vescera at the plate, Andrews reached second on another MacGregor wild pitch, putting the tying run in scoring position for the Diplomats. Vescera then came through in the clutch with a hard-hit single past the third baseman that plated Andrews from second to knot the score at 7-7.

In the top of the eighth, the Brewers managed to put runners on the corners with just one away, but reliever Andrew Green delivered two key outs - a foul out to Shields at third and a flyout to Avery Attinson in center - to keep things all squared heading into the bottom half of the inning.

Despite the first two batters being put away, the Diplomats once again gutted out a two-out score to secure the final 8-7 victory. Aaron Gillette kept things alive with a double to straightaway center, before Triantos notched his second bunt single of the day - again down the third base line - to advance Gillette to third. Another Vassar wild pitch proved to be the difference in the outcome, as Gillette crossed home plate to give F&M back the lead.

Paul Giulio retired the side in order in the ninth, including two strikeouts in a row to close things out, to earn his third save of the season.

The F&M bullpen put together a stellar performance in the victory, allowing just two runs in eight innings of work, and escaping several jams throughout. Green moved to 2-0 with the victory after pitching two shutout frames in the seventh and eighth. Chris Haylon and Brandon Theriault also came through with solid performances on the mound in relief. Haylon allowed two hits and no runs in two innings, while Theriault struck out one and picked off three runners in three innings of work.

Zachary Prudoff suffers the loss for the Brewers after tossing 1.2 innings in relief, allowing one run on two hits with three walks and a strikeout.

Shields went 2-for-2 with two RBIs and one run scored to pace F&M, while Connor Devlin tallied two RBIs and touched home once on one hit. Gillette and Triantos also had two hits on the day.

Kyle Casey notched a game-high three RBIs to lead Vassar, while A.J. Kim posted a 3-for-4 line
and scored once.

The Diplomats return to action on Friday with a doubleheader against Clarkson. Game on is set for 1:30 pm.

Franklin & Marshall 8, Vassar 7 (Mar 15, 2012 at Winter Haven, Fla.)
Vassar.............. 140 002 000  -  7 14  2      (0-5)
Franklin & Marshall. 032 011 01X  -  8 11  0      (6-5)
Pitchers: Vassar - John MacGregor; Zachary Prudoff(7) and A.J. Kim. Franklin & Marshall - Eric Herbst; Chris Haylon(2); Brandon Theriault(4); Andrew Green(7); Paul Giulio(9) and Joe Gallitto; Patrick Andrews.

Win-Andrew Green(2-0) 

Save-Paul Giulio (3) 

Loss-Zachary Prudoff (0-1)

HR VASSAR - Brett Zaziski.

E Herbst faced 4 batters in the 2nd.