Posted: 03/15/2013 | Last updated: March 15, 2013 at 08:30 PM
EMMITSBURG, Md. – The Lehigh baseball team took Mount St. Mary’s into extra innings after facing a seven-run deficit, but it was the Mountaineers who came out on top 9-8 after 10 innings Friday at E.T. Straw Family Stadium. The Mountain Hawks are now 9-6 this season, while Mount St. Mary’s is 4-9.
Sophomore Pat Walshe put Lehigh on the board 1-0 with his first home run of the season in the second inning, but Tom Healy scored to give the Mountaineers the equalizer in the bottom half of the frame. Mount St. Mary’s enjoyed a five-run fourth inning highlighted by a bases loaded double from Mark Quaranta off junior starter Colin Gotzon. Sam Nott followed up by bringing Quaranta home with a single down the left field line.
Lehigh trailed 8-1 after a solo shot by Nick Walker in the fifth inning, but did not go away quietly. After a sacrifice fly from freshman Mackey Price, junior Brandon Wilt kicked off a two-out rally for the Mountain Hawks with a walk. Back-to-back hits from sophomores Justin Pacchioli and John Elson off Mountaineers reliever Nick Riley in the seventh gave Lehigh a four-run inning of its own and put a dent in the Mount Saint Mary’s lead.
Trailing 8-5 going into the ninth inning, the Brown and White had another rally in them. Wilt reached base on a walk to begin the inning with Pacchioli coming up to bat. Pacchioli hit into a fielder’s choice that threw out the lead runner, but Elson was hit by a pitch to put the tying run at the plate. After senior Casey Turner struck out, junior Tyler Brong rocketed a Chris Campbell fastball to left center on a full count for the game tying three-run home run.
Going into extra innings for the second time in the young season, the Mountain Hawks sent freshman Kevin Long to the mound for his fifth inning of relief in the contest. Long was pulled in favor of senior Tom O’Malley after Zane Bard singled to right. Brandon Scott advanced Bard to second with a sacrifice bunt to the mound. Jay Knight roped a single off O’Malley that drove in Bard for the winning run.
Both teams combined for 14 two-out RBI while Lehigh had a total of 30 base runners in the game.
“We certainly had a lot of missed opportunities early and then battled all the way back to make it tricky the last few innings, but we just didn’t capitalize early enough in the first four,” Lehigh head coach Sean Leary said.
Long took the loss despite fanning a career-high eight batters in 5.2 innings of work, while Scott Nickerson earned the win for the Mountaineers after coming on in the 10th.
Turner and Pacchioli each had four-hit games for Lehigh, while Brong’s home run gave him a team-leading three RBI. Quaranta had three RBI for the Mountaineers, while Knight ended up 2-for-6 at the plate.
The Mountain Hawks will play a doubleheader against the Mountaineers beginning at noon Saturday to conclude their eight-game road trip. The Brown and White will then host the Temple Owls on Tuesday in their home opener. First pitch from Goodman Campus is scheduled for 3 p.m.
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