SYRACUSE, N.Y. (May 10, 2019) – It was 12 runs on 14 hits on Friday night, in support of a stellar outing from junior right-hander Derek Duffy (Farmington, Conn.), as the Franklin Pierce University baseball team fought off elimination again and forced its way into the championship day of the Northeast-10 Conference Championship. The Ravens posted a 12-1 win over host Le Moyne in an elimination contest at the Onondaga Baseball Complex.
With the win, Franklin Pierce – the fourth seed out of the Northeast Division – improves to 26-22 and extends its season another day. With the loss, Le Moyne – the Southwest Division's third seed – is eliminated and closes its season at 24-25.
Franklin Pierce advances to the final round of the NE10 Championship, which will commence at noon on Saturday at Onondaga Baseball Complex. The Ravens will have to face Merrimack – the Northeast Division's third seed – after the Warriors rang up a 5-2 win over Le Moyne in Friday's winner's bracket game. Franklin Pierce will have to defeat Merrimack twice on Saturday to claim the NE10 title.
Franklin Pierce jumped out front in a hurry, as it plated five runs in the top of the first inning. A pair of walks, a fielder's choice and a strikeout combined to load the bases with two outs for the sixth batter of the inning, freshman third baseman Jethro Hurt (New York, N.Y.), who cracked an RBI single to left field to open the scoring. Junior first baseman Jonel Ozuna (New York, N.Y.) followed and dumped an RBI single into left as well, to make it 2-0. Senior second baseman Carmine Giordano (New Rochelle, N.Y.) followed with the pivotal at-bat of the inning, as miscommunication in the Le Moyne outfield led to three more runs. Giordano lifted a high fly ball into left-center field. Senior left fielder David DiNorcia eased his pursuit of the ball, to give way for junior center fielder Justin Tuey, however Tuey did the same to let DiNorcia make the play, and the ball fell untouched for a three-run double to make it 5-0.
The Ravens tacked on a pair of runs in the top of the fifth to push the lead out to 7-0. A one-out single from senior designated hitter Ural Forbes (Freeport, Bahamas) and a walk to Hurt set the table for Giordano, who did more to earn his RBIs this time. He went the other way and drilled a two-run triple deep into the gap in right-center field.
Meanwhile, Duffy (5-2) was cruising and kept cruising all night. He used just 102 pitches (68 strikes) to go the distance. He allowed only a ninth-inning run on five hits, did not issue a walk and struck out eight.
It was five more runs in the top of the sixth for Franklin Pierce and the rout was on. Senior left fielder Brad Roberto (San Diego, Calif.), Hurt and Giordano all had RBI singles in the inning, while Ozuna clubbed a run-scoring triple over the head of the center fielder and another run scored on an error.
Le Moyne put together a run in the ninth inning to spoil Duffy's shutout bid and create the 12-1 final. Senior catcher Camillo Spinoso singled up the middle with two outs and senior first baseman Andrew Taft brought him all the way around with an RBI double into the gap in right-center.
Senior right-hander Max Tessitore (3-4) started for Le Moyne and needed 81 pitches (49 strikes) to throw the first 4.1 innings. He was ultimately charged with seven runs on seven hits, walked four and struck out one while taking the loss.
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).