SWARTHMORE, Pa. - Franklin & Marshall baseball battled back from an early deficit in game one to claim a 9-5 win before starter Jonathan Cole slammed the door shut on Swarthmore's offense for a 1-0 complete-game shutout in the nightcap as the Diplomats swept the No. 9-ranked Garnet on Saturday afternoon.
The Centennial Conference (CC) road victories propelled F&M's record to 19-11, 6-4 CC on the year while the Garnet tumbled to 16-9, 4-5 CC. The Diplomats are now 3-0 against ranked teams in 2019 and have won three-consecutive CC contests.
With the pair of wins, sixth-year head coach Ryan Horning became the program's all-time wins leader with 117 in his career. He passed Brett Boretti, who was at the helm of F&M baseball from 2001-05, and accumulated a 116-82 record during his tenure.
Game 1: F&M 9, Swarthmore, 5
After falling behind by a 3-0 score in the early stages of game one, F&M tossed five runs on the scoreboard in the fifth to storm in front. Kelsey Launi kick-started the crooked frame with a one-out infield single that allowed Kevin Lammers to score from third. After a wild pitch plated J.J. Freeman and an error at third sent Alex Miller home from third, Will Samuel laced a two-out RBI double to right field that capped off the scoring.
Swarthmore got a run back in the fifth to pull within one off an RBI single. The Garnet loaded the bases with no outs on the board but reliever Kyle Roche forced three straight groundouts, with two base runners being throw out at home plate, to get the Diplomats out of the threat.
Each team traded a run to keep F&M in front at a narrow 6-5 tally before the Diplomats put three insurance scores on the board in the top of the ninth off of three clutch hits. Kyle Ebert's two-out double to left field started the effort before Samuel stepped to the dish and scored two off a single to left field.
Reliever Danny Blugis dominated the ninth by retiring the Garnet in order with three-straight swinging strikeouts.
Samuel was on fire with a 4-for-5 line that included three RBIs and a run scored. Ebert went 2-for-5 with a run scored and an RBI while Blugis notched a hit and drew a pair of walks.
Roche twirled four strong innings of relief, scattering just three hits and not allowing an earned run while striking out two.
Game 2: F&M 1, Swarthmore 0
A pitching dual highlighted the nightcap as F&M tallied the game's first run in the top of the ninth. Blugis reached on a fielder's choice that put the second out of the frame on the board before Lammers notched a game-winning triple to center field that put the Diplomats in front.
Cole (4-2) capped off an incredible outing with a one-two-three ninth as F&M's junior righty froze Washington with a strikeout looking to end the contest.
It marked the fifth inning that Cole did not allow a baserunner as he totaled nine shutout frames, surrendering just three walks and striking out eight. The closest that Swarthmore came to generating a run was in the bottom of the first when the Garnet led off with a double, but Swarthmore stranded the runner at third after Cole retired the next three.
F&M led in hits at 7-3 with Lammers producing a 3-for-4 line with one RBI and a stolen base.
CC action picks back up on Tuesday when the Diplomats host Gettysburg at 3:30 p.m.