CHESTERTOWN, Md. – Franklin & Marshall rallied for a 5-4 game one win in 10 innings, before its offense exploded for a 23-9 victory in the nightcap, as the Diplomats swept Washington College on Saturday in the Centennial Conference (CC) baseball opener for both teams.
The Diplomats improved to 7-8-1, 2-0 CC with the pair of decisions while the Shoremen fell to 16-7, 0-2 CC.
Game 1: F&M 5, Washington 4 (10 Innings)
Down by a 4-0 score heading into the sixth, Dan Marano launched a two-run homer down the right-field line that brought F&M within two. The Diplomats loaded the bases in the seventh when Danny Blugis singled through the left side, Jimmy Whelan sent a double to right center, and Kengo Kawahara reached first after being hit by a pitch. Kelsey Launi stepped to the box and recorded the sacrifice fly that sent Blugis across the plate and brought F&M within one.
The Diplomats completed the comeback bid in the ninth when Whelan's sacrifice fly to centerfield allowed Dan Baroff to reach home to tie the score at 4-4.
In the 10th, F&M took advantage of an infield error to kick-start the inning before Matthew Kann singled through the left side and J.J. Freeman was hit by a pitch to load the bases. Justin Cavegn delivered the winning run, lining a sacrifice fly to center that scored Launi.
Starter Jack Buckley lasted four innings, allowing four earned off eight hits before being relieved by Mike Androconis (1-1) who was dominant out of the bullpen. Androconis mowed down the opposition with 11 strikeouts and surrendered just two hits in six innings of work.
Kawahara and Kann each recorded two of the Diplomats' nine hits in the game. Left fielder Ryan Donnelly led the Washington attack in a 2-for-3 effort with three runs scored at the leadoff spot.
Game 2: F&M 23, Washington 9
A two-out rally in the top of the first led to five runs on five hits as F&M tallied four RBI singles in the frame. Each team traded a run to bring the Diplomat lead to 6-1 before Washington climbed back into the contest with two runs on three hits in the third to pull within three.
However, that was all the closer the Shoremen managed to get as the Diplomats broke the game open with four run frames in the fourth, fifth and seventh innings to go ahead by 14. F&M tacked on again thanks to a Kann two-RBI double in the top of the eighth for the 20-4 advantage and added three more runs to the team's final score in the ninth.
Jonathan Cole earned the win with a six-inning effort, allowing only two earned and striking out seven. Washington's starter Brian Kasey was pulled after two innings and was tagged for six earned runs on seven hits.
F&M notched a season-high 24 hits, batted at an astounding .425 (17-40) clip with runners on base and went 4-for-5 with runners on and less than two outs on the board. The Diplomats scored runs in all but two innings and had eight batters record two or more hits.
Max Schwartz led the way with a 4-for-6 line, scoring four runs and notching five RBIs. Launi went 3-for4 with three runs scored and three RBIs, while Whelan tallied a 3-for-5 effort with three runs scored and three RBIs. Kann went 4-for-7 with two runs scored and three RBIs, Justin Cavegn was 3-for-6, while Danny Blugis, Freeman, and Marano all collected two hits.
The Diplomats aim to keep the momentum rolling on Tuesday when F&M hosts Gettysburg in its home opener at 3:30 p.m.