SYRACUSE, N.Y. (May 9, 2019) – It will be back to a win-or-go-home scenario for the Franklin Pierce University baseball team for the rest of the weekend. The Ravens scored first on Thursday afternoon at Onondaga Baseball Complex, but then surrendered the next 16 runs to host Le Moyne as part of a 16-2 loss to open the double-elimination portion of the Northeast-10 Conference Championship.
With the loss, Franklin Pierce – the fourth seed out of the Northeast Division – falls to 24-22, while Le Moyne – the Southwest Division's third seed – improves to 24-23.
The Ravens will face elimination almost immediately, as they will square off with Southwest Division's fourth seed, Southern Connecticut State, at 5 p.m. Thursday. The Owls were defeated earlier Thursday by Merrimack, 8-1. Meanwhile, Le Moyne and Merrimack will meet in a winner's bracket game, currently scheduled for noon on Friday.
Franklin Pierce opened the scoring with a run in the top of the third inning. Senior second baseman Carmine Giordano (New Rochelle, N.Y.) led off and tucked a solo home run inside the left-field foul pole, his first of the season.
Le Moyne answered immediately, with two in the bottom half of the third. Junior third baseman Nicholas Jacques led off with a double down the left-field line before a pair of walks eventually loaded the bases with one out. Freshman shortstop Nick Nevins cashed in both runs with a two-run single through the right side of the infield.
The Dolphins let their big bat do the heavy lifting in the bottom of the fifth to add three runs and push the lead out to 5-1. Senior left fielder David DiNorcia singled to right and senior catcher Camillo Spinoso singled back through the middle to set the table for senior first baseman Andrew Taft with two outs. Taft took the first pitch he saw and deposited it well beyond the fence in left-center field for a three-run homer, his NE10-leading 14th of the season.
Le Moyne broke the game wide open with a four spot in the bottom of the sixth to stretch the lead out to 9-1. Sophomore right fielder Michael Smith walked, freshman second baseman Drew Carroll was hit by a pitch and DiNorcia walked, as a trio of free baserunners loaded the bases for Nevins. Nevins promptly unloaded them, by clubbing a three-run triple which one-hopped up against the fence deep in the gap in right-center. Spinoso followed with an infield single to score Nevins.
The Dolphins added a run in the seventh on a leadoff home run by senior designated hitter Nick Place to left-center field, his third of the season. Six more in the eighth, including a three-run triple by junior center fielder Justin Tuey, pushed the lead out as high as 16-1.
Franklin Pierce plated an unearned run in the top of the ninth to create the 16-2 final.
Graduate student right-hander Ryan Covelle (Medford, Mass.) started on the mound and suffered the loss (6-5) for Franklin Pierce. Over five innings and 75 pitches (41 strikes), he allowed five runs on six hits, walked four and struck out two.
Sophomore left-hander Joe Vail (3-5) logged seven innings and 104 pitches (64 strikes) on the hill for Le Moyne. He allowed one run on five hits, walked three and struck out eight.
For more information on Franklin Pierce Athletics, please visit the official website of Franklin Pierce Athletics (https://www.fpuravens.com). Also be sure to follow the Ravens through the Department of Athletics' official Facebook page (http://www.facebook.com/FranklinPierceRavens), its YouTube channel (http://www.youtube.com/franklinpiercesports) and its Twitter feed (http://twitter.com/FPUathletics). Fans wishing to purchase Franklin Pierce baseball apparel can do so at the Department of Athletics' online store (https://www.fpuravens.com/store).