CHESTERTOWN, Md. – Seven batters provided multi-hit performances, starter Alex Guerra earned his fourth win of the season and Franklin & Marshall's baseball team completed the season sweep of Washington by a 10-3 score on Friday afternoon. The Shoremen (17-8, 8-4 CC) fell from their hold on first place of the Centennial Conference (CC), while the Diplomats (20-7, 8-4 CC) made the jump to second and trail only Johns Hopkins in first with a 7-3-1 CC mark.
The crucial conference matchup began with a two-run Washington homer in the bottom of the third to put F&M in an early 2-0 hole. Christopher Vincent led off the next inning with a single up the middle, before Dan Marano stepped to the dish and scorched his second home run of the season, a two-run shot to right field that evened the game.
Tied at 2-2, the Diplomats' offense went on a tear, exploding for five runs off five hits in the fifth inning for the 7-2 lead. The scoring began when a wild pitch on a double steal sent third baseman Matt Mezansky across the plate. David Iacobucci doubled to right, scoring Luke Seib, followed by a Mike Smeriglio single to left center that scored Iacobucci.
Later in the frame, Marano continued his solid day with an RBI single up the middle to plate Smeriglio, before Brian Erb wrapped up the offensive onslaught with an RBI single through the right side.
Washington kept it close with an RBI double in the bottom of the sixth to pull within four at 7-3, however an Iacobucci RBI single up the middle in the top of the eighth and RBI singles from Erb and Brett Poniros in the ninth, sealed the win for F&M.
Guerra (4-1) was awarded the win after tossing seven innings and allowing three earned while striking out six. The victory was the 16th of his career, placing the senior righty in a tie for fifth place on the program's all-time list, and putting him just four shy of the F&M record held by Ted Serro '06. The Shoremen's Billy Griffin (2-3) suffered the loss, allowing six earned in five innings.
The Diplomats combined for 18 hits, while Washington tallied eight through nine innings. Luke Seib went a perfect 3-for-3, drawing two walks and scoring two runs in the contest. Vincent produced a 3-for-4 line to go along with three runs scored, while Iacobucci went 3-for-5 with one run scored and two RBIs. Marano and Erb both went 2-for-5 and combined for five RBIs on the afternoon.
F&M continued to punish teams on the base paths, combining for five steals, including two a piece from Mezansky and Seib. Entering today's action, the Diplomats were fourth in the nation in steals per game with a 2.96 average and fifth in overall stolen bases with 72.
Centerfielder Bryan Baquer tallied a 3-for-4 effort from the third spot in the order for Washington, while shortstop Joe Lozupone went 1-for-4 with two RBIs and a run scored.
F&M returns to the diamond tomorrow, hosting Dickinson for a double header at Caplan Field. Game one is set for a 12:30 p.m. start time.