Posted: April 25, 2006
BETHLEHEM, Pa. – Lehigh center fielder Joe Ercolano went 3-for-5 with a double, two RBIs, and two runs scored, and designated hitter Matt McBride belted his Patriot League-leading tenth home run of the season as the host Mountain Hawks rolled to a 12-3 win over visiting St. Joseph’s at the baseball field on Goodman Campus on Tuesday afternoon. The victory evens Lehigh’s record at 23-23; SJU drops to 15-27 overall.
Lehigh’s Joe Raniszewski and St. Joseph’s Joel Grimshaw engaged in a pitcher’s duel over the first couple of innings, and the game remained scoreless into the bottom of the third. After Ercloano led off the inning with a single, third baseman Matt Geiger tripled down the right field line, breaking the scoreless tie. The next batter, McBride, lifted a fly ball to left, plating Geiger with the game’s second run.
In the fourth, freshman catcher Geoff Campbell hit a solo homer to right – his second long ball of the season. An inning later, McBride blasted a solo shot to left – his tenth.
Leading by a 4-1 score in the home half of the sixth, the Mountain Hawks scored five times to put the game out of reach. Lehigh registered five hits in the frame, and all five runs came with two outs in the inning.
The Brown and White added a pair of runs in the seventh and one more in the eighth, scoring in their final seven at-bats of the afternoon.
Raniszewski (2-1) allowed only one infield hit and struck out three over four innings of work to pick up the win. Adam Marr and Joel Hockman combined to strike out three more over the game’s final five innings.
McBride was 2-for-3 at the plate on the day, driving in a pair. His 48 runs batted in so far this season leaves him one shy of tying teammate Andrew Smith for the school and league single season RBI mark of 49, established by Smith in 2005.
In all, Lehigh recorded 18 hits in the win, with six players registering two or more hits apiece.
St. Joseph’s catcher Greg Mason was 2-for-4 at the plate, but was called for catcher’s interference twice in the game. The visitors committed four errors, including the two interference calls.
With a one-game lead atop the Patriot League standings and four games to play, the Mountain Hawks resume Patriot League play with a four-game set at Army beginning Saturday. First pitch of game one Saturday is set for noon from Doubleday Field in West Point, N.Y., and Saturday’s twin bill can be heard live on the Lehigh web site at Lehighsports.com starting at 11:45 am.