LANCASTER, Pa. - Franklin & Marshall baseball got off to a strong start in Centennial Conference (CC) play, sweeping McDaniel on Saturday at Caplan Field by scores of 8-4 and 10-1. Senior first baseman Dan Marano tallied three RBIs in game two to tie the program's career record with 108.
The Diplomats improved to 15-6, 2-0 CC on the year while the Green Terror faltered at 8-10-1, 0-2 CC.
Game 1: F&M 8, McDaniel 4
Saturday's opening contest was tight early on as both teams were deadlocked at 1-1 heading into the bottom of the fourth. F&M took advantage of a few McDaniel miscues in the frame and produced timely hitting to plate five runs on four hits for the 6-1 advantage.
McDaniel cut the deficit to two with a pair of runs in the seventh and a solo homer in the top of the eighth that made it a 6-4 game. However, F&M notched two clutch insurance runs in the bottom half of the frame to extend the lead back to four. Alex Miller opened with a leadoff triple and Cavegn eventually scored him with a one-out single to right field.
Don DiLoreto came to the plate with two outs and reached on a fielder's choice with the bases loaded that allowed Freeman to cross home from third.
Starter Jack Buckley (4-0) continued his torrid start to the season with a seven-inning performance, allowing just one earned on six hits and a walk while striking nine batters. Reliever Danny Blugis tossed the final two frames to earn his second save of the year.
Four F&M batters registering two of the Diplomats' 12 hits on the afternoon. Catcher Kyle Ebert led the way with a 2-for-4 performance to go along with a pair of RBIs, while Will Samuel was 2-for-4 with a run scored.
Game 2: F&M 10, McDaniel 1
The Diplomats' offense was in command early on with a run in the first inning and a pair of RBI singles in the second frame that put F&M in front at 3-0. Freeman tacked on with a two-out, RBI triple in the bottom of the fourth that put the Diplomats ahead by four before F&M added three more to the scoreboard in the fifth for the 7-0 edge.
Marano scored on an infield error in the sixth before he stepped to the plate in the bottom of the eighth with Ebert on first and launched a home run to right field. That two-run shot was the first homer of the season for Marano, the eighth of his career, and allowed him to tie F&M's career RBI mark.
Starter Jonathan Cole (3-2) was lights out, tossing seven shutout innings, surrendering just five hits and striking out eight. Jonathan Pesantez and Eric Dyke were strong in relief with both twirling shutout frames.
The Diplomats collected 14 hits on the day. Marano was 3-for-5 with a run scored and three RBIs, while Freeman tallied a 3-for-5 line of his own from the leadoff position with a run scored and two RBIs. Ebert, Lammers, and Miller all recorded a pair of hits.
F&M swiped five bags in the contest with Miller tallying a pair.
CC competition picks back up on Tuesday when the Diplomats travel to Dickinson for a 3:30 p.m. game.