AUBURNDALE, Fla. – Franklin & Marshall's baseball team dropped a 13-3 (7 innings) contest to Centenary in the morning on Friday, before bouncing back with a dominant 22-5 (7 innings) bashing of Plattsburgh St. in the afternoon at the Russmatt Central Florida Invitational. With the pair of decisions, the Diplomats moved to 6-2 on the year.
Against Centenary (7-2), F&M got off to a rocky start, surrendering four runs off four consecutive hits in the opening frame to fall behind by a 4-0 score. Centenary tacked on two more in the bottom of the third to take a 6-0 advantage off an RBI single to center, followed by a two-out RBI double to left.
The Cyclones continued to put on the offensive pressure in the fourth, opening the frame with a pair of singles, before a double to center plated a pair of runners and extended the lead to eight.
In the top of the fifth, the Diplomats finally notched their first hit of the contest when Christopher Vincent led off with a single and Casey Bulik followed with a single of his own to left field. A Reed Williams sacrifice bunt gave F&M runners at second and third with just one out, however, Centenary retired the side with a strikeout and grounder to second.
The game was put out of reach in the fifth when the Cyclones capitalized on a number of Diplomat miscues, tallying five runs off two hits, a pair of errors and two walks.
Trailing 13-0 heading into the top of the seventh, F&M made some noise when back-to-back wild pitches scored Ryan Obrecht and Jimmy Whelan from third, before Cory Hecht registered an RBI single to center that scored Williams. The Diplomats were unable to cut the deficit by more than 10, forcing the mercy rule and a stoppage of play in the seventh inning.
Centenary outhit F&M by a 13-4 margin. The Diplomats stranded eight base runners in the contest, while the Cyclones left just four runners on the base paths.
Sam Ackerman (1-1) was charged the loss for F&M, tossing four innings and allowing eight earned off 11 hits. Bobby Gaston came out of the 'pen in the fourth and threw 1 2/3 shutout innings, while striking out three. Centenary's Jimmy Kraivec earned the victory after throwing six scoreless frames and striking out eight.
Later in the day against Plattsburgh St. (7-7), the Diplomats scored early and often, jumping out to a 5-0 advantage in the first off three hits, including an RBI single from Dan Marano and an RBI double from Mike Smeriglio.
F&M extended the advantage by putting two more runs on the board in the second, before the Diplomats' potent offense exploded for 11 runs off of six hits and four walks in the bottom of the third, to make it an 18-0 game. F&M's offense tallied four additional runs off three hits and a pair of errors in the fourth to wrap up the scoring.
The Cardinals added five runs late in the contest, but it was too little too late as the mercy rule was enforced following the top of the seventh.
Only four batters were stranded by the F&M offense, as the Diplomats outhit Plattsburgh St. by a 15-9 margin. Luke Seib led the attack with a 3-for-5 day at the plate to go along with a pair of runs and six RBIs. Marano and Brian Erb also tallied a pair of hits and RBIs, while eight other Diplomats recorded a hit.
Starting pitcher Mack Glavin (1-0) earned his second career win after working his way out of danger throughout the game, tossing 5 2/3 innings of shutout ball and striking out three. The Cardinals' Trevor Markey (0-1) was charged with the loss, allowing four earned off four hits in two innings on the mound.
The Diplomats return to action tomorrow in Auburndale, facing off against Fredonia in a double header that begins at 2:00 p.m.