LANCASTER, Pa. – Several clutch double plays from a sure-handed infield and timely late-inning hitting propelled the Franklin & Marshall baseball team to a crucial 3-2 Centennial Conference (CC) win against Gettysburg on Friday afternoon at Caplan Field.
The Diplomats improved to 11-12 overall and evened their CC record at 2-2 while the Bullets fell to 16-10, 2-2 CC.
Knotted at 2-2 in the top of the eighth, second baseman Casey Bulik laced a one-out double down the left field line to chase Gettysburg's starter from the game. David Iacobucci stepped to the dish and followed with a hard hit shot to right field. The wind played havoc with the ball, which dropped for a double and allowed Bulik to cross home for the go-ahead score.
Closer Andrew Mascis entered in the ninth to preserve the one-run lead and got an early out on the board with a groundout to short. The Bullets drew a walk in the next at-bat before a grounder to shortstop Reed Williams kicked off a traditional 643 double play, the Diplomats third of the game, to deliver Mascis his fifth save of the season.
Third baseman Matt Mezansky began the scoring in the bottom of the first with a two-out RBI single to right field that plated Tyler Daley from second. Gettysburg answered in the next frame with an RBI double to tie the score at 1-1, which held until the bottom of the fourth when Williams' RBI single sent Luke Seib home from second.
Gettysburg fought back again in the top of the eighth to tie the score with an RBI single to right field, but reliever Gareth Fancher (2-0) limited the damage by forcing a double play with one out and runners on first and second.
Starter Mike Androconis put together another solid performance, tossing seven innings and allowing two earned off eight hits. Brad DeMartino (4-2) was dealt the loss for the Bullets, pitching 7 1/3 frames, surrendering three earned off seven hits and striking out one.
Bulik and Mezansky both tallied a 2-for-4 line for the Diplomats while third baseman Logan Sneed paced Gettysburg's offense with a 3-for-4 showing.
F&M continues CC action on Sunday, traveling to Johns Hopkins for a doubleheader beginning at 12:30 p.m.