SCRANTON, Pa. - Franklin & Marshall downed Scranton by a narrow 8-7 score in non-conference baseball competition on Thursday afternoon.
The Diplomats, who have won five straight and eight out of their last nine, improved to 24-12 on the year while the Royals dropped to 12-17.
In the top of the second, F&M got on the board first and took a 3-0 lead off of three hits and a costly Scranton error. Matthew Kann continued to swing a hot bat with an RBI double that plated Will Samuel from third before Kelsey Launi followed with a two-RBI triple to right center.
Kann led off the top of the fourth with a triple to right field and crossed home plate thanks to Andrew Poirier's double down the left field line for the 4-0 F&M advantage. The Royals finally responded in the bottom of the frame to pull within two after three consecutive hits to open the inning.
In the bottom of the fifth, a single and a double put a pair of Scranton runners in scoring position with two outs, before a homer to right center scored three and placed the Diplomats in a 5-4 deficit.
Four F&M runs off of five hits in the top of the seventh reclaimed the Diplomat lead for good at 8-5. Dan Baroff opened the scoring with an RBI double that plated Alex Miller, while Connor Green knocked in a run with his single to left field, and Poirier recorded a two-RBI single to complete the crooked frame.
Scranton chipped into the deficit with runs in the seventh and eighth and made it interesting with a one-out double in the ninth. However, closer Danny Blugis forced a weak fly ball to right field and ended the contest with a swinging strikeout for his fifth save of the season.
Reliever Charlie Wright (3-1) was credited with the win after tossing 1 1/3 innings and allowing one earned. Starter Jonathan Pesantez pitched the opening five frames, allowing five earned off eight hits and striking out three.
Kann notched a pair of extra-base hits to register a 2-for-4 line with two runs scored and an RBI. Poirier was 2-for-4 with three RBIs, while Green also tallied a 2-for-4 effort. Baroff went 2-for-3 with an RBI and a run scored, and Kevin Lammers provided a perfect 2-for-2 effort with one of the Diplomats' four stolen bases on the afternoon.
F&M totaled 14 hits in the game with five going for extra bases.
Centennial Conference (CC) play picks back up tomorrow at against Ursinus. First pitch is currently slated for 3:30 p.m.